Category Archives: Topics

Exploring Bawsey Pits

We had heard a lot about this supposedly dangerous lake, and another experienced outdoor swimmer and I went to explore it and assess the risks and the possibilities for swimming there. We found it to be a wonderful location and from this visit couldn’t see any more hazards than in other similar lakes, other than the usual risks of swimming which can be mitigated with accurate information. But anyone visiting must do their own assessment each time, and take care. And if anyone has any specific information about unusual risks at this location it would be interesting to hear about those.

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Is it only legal to swim in 3% of rivers in England?

Nick Hayes’ Book of Trespass and the Right to Roam campaign are brilliant contributions to campaigning for access to rivers for swimmers and paddlers. However I think that there is a flaw in this campaign. I think that giving the impression that it is illegal to swim in 97% of rivers in England could have negative consequences, with a chilling effect. In fact, though 3% of the length of rivers have uncontested rights to access, there are strong arguments that there are more rights than that. The issue is complex, and I’ve only touched on it here, with links for further reading (including the book).

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Support Diversity Swim for GRT

All are welcome to support the fundraising activity through November for Gypsy Roma+Traveller Charities, wherever you are. You can take part by doing some swims or dips, sponsor and support those who take part, send messages of solidarity or if you can you could donate. Sponsorship page,, or send messages to me on Facebook or Contact me

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From 5 Nov to 1 Dec Can I swim, or drive to get there?

Yes, you can swim outdoors (though not in a pool or organised venue), and you can drive or travel to get there (though you should minimise the number of journeys and the distance you travel). Leaving your home for recreation or exercise (including swimming) must only be done alone, with one other, or with members of your household or support bubble. This note is about England only.

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