Hundreds turned out to support swimmers at this year’s charity Swimathon.
The Accrington Rotary Club event, organised in partnership with the Observer, was attended by more than 200 spectators and saw 15 teams complete 1,552 lengths for a charity or community group of their choice.
Jacquie Baldwin, rotary club secretary, praised the teams who took part in the swim at Accrington Academy on Sunday, November 23 and said it was a great success.
She said: “It went really well, we had a very good turnout and everyone enjoyed themselves, all the teams were really enthusiastic and had a great time.”
Jacquie said that the club had not yet reached a final figure for how much money had been raised at the event, but judging by previous years she expected in the region of £1,500.
She added: “In the previous two Swimathons a total of around £4,000 has been raised for various charities and causes so we are expecting in the region of £1,500 to £2,000 to have been raised this time around.”
Accrington Rotary Club president Anthony Helliwell, who took part in the event with his daughter and granddaughter, said: “It went really well, it was a really fun event.
“There must have been at least 200 people watching, they were all screaming and shouting and cheering everyone on, it was a great atmosphere and I would like to thank everyone who attended.
“It wasn’t a race but everyone had a good banter and we were all trying to beat each other, it was a really fun day.”
It was not smiles all round however as the Pioneer’79 Swimming Club fell just short of their national Swimathon record of 217 lengths in 50 minutes.
The record beating team had hoped to top their own amazing feat at this year’s event, but fell short by just seven lengths.
Steve Makin, Pioneer’79 Swimming Club chairman, said: “We managed 210 lengths this time, it was a great day and everyone enjoyed themselves but we were very disappointed not to beat our record.
“We will look forward to next year’s event now and we will try to beat the record again.”
Other groups involved in the event included Heathland School, Wellfield School, Gaskell Motor Bodies and Baxenden St John’s CE Primary School.
Organisers have said that planning will now begin for next year’s Swimathon which is set to take place slightly later in the year to avoid a clash with other charity events such as Children in Need.