The 11th annual John West Great East Swim, a family-friendly event for keen swimmers and spectators alike, took place on Saturday 22 June at Alton Water. The manmade reservoir, which is the largest in Suffolk, proved the picture-perfect setting for a day of farmers’ markets, musical entertainment and of course, swimming – with distances ranging from 250 metres to a whopping 10k.
Stage Event Security were delighted to supply event security for the Great East Swim – the organisers of which work in partnership with Suffolk County Council in the hopes of making Suffolk the most active county in the country.
The event, which is open to anyone aged 8 years-old and over, is suitable for all abilities and is a great choice for those looking to try swimming in open water for the first time.
Alex Jackson, Director of the John West Great Swim Series, said: “It was another great day in Suffolk and we would like to congratulate all swimmers and swimrunners who took on the John West Great East Swim today.
“We would also like to say thank you to all event staff, the safety team and the volunteers, who continue to perform an essential role in this event.
“Thanks should also go to our partners at Suffolk County Council who help make this event the fantastic festival of swimming that it is.”
This year’s event was a huge success, with visitors basking in temperatures of 21 degrees Celsius and enjoying a bright, sunny day overall. Thousands flocked to the event to enjoy an outdoor swimming experience, both in a competitive and leisurely capacity – medals and finisher’s t-shirts were available to all who participated. While many swimmers were there simply for a day out, there were lots of groups and individuals completing swims for charity.
An outreach programme targeting physically inactive people and people with long-term health conditions saw sixty-five participants, as well as twenty-eight school pupils who completed the 250-metre swim.
The event was such a success once again, that a date has already been set for next year – Saturday 20 June. Entry starts from £16 per person for the family-friendly Swim250 race (250 metres) to £66 for those wanting to take on the challenge of the 10k race.
Whether you’re a seasoned swimmer, a proud doggy-paddler or you simply want to try swimming in the great outdoors, this is a fantastic day out to suit all ages and abilities.