25 Jul Ash Swims The Channel!
“Proud, Inspiring, legend, awesome, remarkable, amazing…” just some of the words used deservedly many times over to describe our very own Maes Y Nant centre manager this last week.
Amongst the Robinwood staff team we have many people who achieve remarkable feats in their spare time, but none more so than Ash, who last week swam the English Channel in 21 hours, and in doing so raised a huge amount of money for the Charity Safe Passage.
Ash got into the water at 7:30 am and set foot onto French soil 21 hours later. This means she spent 1260 minutes swimming solo in the channel (equivalent to about 18 Robinwood sessions!). Her support crew in were the boat alongside her shouting encouragement and offering food, but she had no actual company in the water apart from seals and porpoises (a welcome sight) and the slightly more painful company of the jellyfish!
The journey didn’t begin there though, this mission has been in the planning for some time. Ash completed a qualifying swim on a training course a couple of summers ago which enabled her to book her slot, which she did over a year in advance. As well as a long, intense (and often cold!) training programme, she had to hope that the conditions were in her favour so she could even start the swim.
Allocated a 3 day window for the swim, Ash and her support crew of a swimming friend, her Dad and former BH staff member Ben Rayton, had to be in Dover ready to go! Thankfully they didn’t have to wait too long before ‘The Call’ came.
The final part of the swim did not go as Ash would have hoped for, as she was pushed north , with the coastline in sight. Showing true Robinwood grit, she kept on swimming and landed north of Calais. This meant she swam a total of 60 miles, which is further than most channel swims.
The support for Ash came from all parts of the UK and beyond, with people tracking her swim late into the night and not able to sleep because of it. Her fundraising total leapt by over £1000 over the course of the swim, as people were following her journey and appreciating the scale of her challenge.
This achievement is the culmination of years of effort and planning, miles and miles swum in a variety of locations, some glamourous and hot and some less so –Liverpool Docks are a different prospect to Greek Islands! Giving up weekend after weekend to travel up and down the country to train.
Robinwood could not be prouder of Ash for undertaking this truly epic adventure and working so so hard to achieve her goal and be one of less than 2000 people that have successfully completed a solo channel swim.
She sends her thanks to everyone who supported her and donated to her charity – the total now stands at an incredible £4453.
Massive congratulations Ash – enjoy a much deserved summer break!!