Diversity swims Week 4 for GRT

Norfolk and Suffolk swimmers  are dipping through November to raise awareness and funds for some organisations run by and working with the Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Communities. Here are posts and photos from Days 22-28. Support us here, on the Sponsor me page

We used the lucky numbers lent us by the grandmother of one of the fundraisers, Milly, who describes herself as “Romani and proud”, to inspire our swims. They are: 3, 5, 7, 21 and 30.

You can join in or send messages in our public  Facebook event, donate on the Sponsor me page, and read about the issues in this post about solidarity with GRT.

Imogen: At the end of week 4 we have raised £777.00, plus a further £155.50 in gift aid, from 39 donations, which is fantastic! Well done, everyone. Let’s do a special push for 29-30 Nov, dip in support and post pics on lucky 30 Nov!

22 November

sea sunriseRachel: Think this is probably the longest into the winter I’ve kept swimming regularly outside. Been good to meet people to go with and keep the motivation up!

swimmerImogen: Today’s dip was for about 5 minutes at 8.8° in the Wensum, at the end of a glorious afternoon and before a stunning sunset. paddleThis morning I had two paddles, about halfway through a 14 mile cycle ride, one in the river Wissey not far from the source, and the other in an amazing pond. So you could say I had three dips in total, if you count the foot dips and my short swim!

23 November

riverImogen: A beautiful sunny day for swim 25 in November, with the sun making it feel slightly better than the chilly 7.3° in which I managed 5 minutes swimming hardly anywhere against the current in the Wensum. So two lucky numbers today – seven and five. It felt crazy to be removing all my warm clothes to get into the icy water, but as usual I was inspired by the support for the challenge – doing 30 dips in November

24 November

sunset lakeImogen: A 5 minute dip just after a glorious sunset, 8.5° in the lake with a chilly breeze, but a little alder tree to shelter by to change.

25 November

lakeImogen: Swim 27 in what I call Lake 1, on the last mild day of the month, for 3 minutes, water pretty chilly at 7.6°. Halfway through a 19 mile cycle ride, tough returning in the dusk and rain. I’m dedicating this swim to my friend and ex-colleague Christine, who today let us know about the passing of her husband Richard at a unbearably young age of 58, leaving her and her two sons and other family members bereft. Chris has this summer taken to open water swimming; please send thoughts of cold water healing to her.

26 November

sea sunriseRachel: Norfolk and Suffolk’s lucky swims have made it onto the OSS! I have pledged to do a lucky 7 swims this month. My frosty swim this morning was swim number 5, so still another couple to fit in before the end of the month (otherwise known as Tuesday – eek!). Committing to this challenge half way through the month is doubling what I was thinking of doing as a newbie winter swimmer. Can confirm it will be a challenge! First frosty swim. Actual crunchy sand.

river bridgeImogen: Just a foot dip/paddle/foot dangle today, under a bridge on a cycle ride, very cold. Lovely low sun and mist rising late afternoon and sunset. Dip a day in November.

poolm chains, birds, sunrise
Shaun, Beccles Lido reopening 2 Dec

Shaun: i swam on the the 3rd, 5th, 7th and plan to swim on 30th… should have swam on 21st but… will have to think of a ’21’ challenge before Monday…

27 November

sunriseAmy: Swim number 30 of the month. Swimming into the sun at Trowse Meadow with birds chirping and a heron overhead.

misty sunImogen: Paddle in the early morning mist today, really cold 6.3 degrees in the Wendling Beck. Contemplated a proper dip, but really couldn’t face it so early! Refreshing though, and rather lovely.

Vicki: Crazy moonlight swim at Swanton Morley this evening! My coldest but favourite one so far!swimmer

28 November

swimmersJustine: Wow! What a refreshing 4 dagger swim that was this morning at Swanton Morley with a friend! Thermometer read 6.9!! Neither of us were in for very long at all this morning, about 3 minutes maybe but we still reaped the rewards for our efforts. We were blessed with some lovely sunshine afterwards as we sat under the trees with our hot drinks. My phone takes loads of photos underwater without me knowing but i quite like the results!underwater

leaves on water

swimmers or swim placeHelen: Iver, River Colne. Coldest yet….9 degrees, we think. Thermometer not working! But colder than last week. The glorious weir!!!!

Imogen: I was rewarded with the fluorescent flash of cyan as a kingfisher I disturbed shot across the pond, then as I got into its frankly uninviting water through the deep mulch of dead leaves, was rewarded again as it dashed back, clearly confused by this alien invasion to its early morning quiet. A 3 minute dip in 6° water, then walked back home in my sodden neoprene leggings and boots to a very welcome warm bath. Dip 28 done! Two more to go to complete the lucky 30 for this month.


The first seven days are reported here, Diversity swims for GRT: the Nov challenge starts

Read about swims 8-14 November, Diversity swims for GRT: the Nov challenge part 2

And the third week here, Diversity swims Nov Part 3 for GRT

Final two days here, Diversity swims for GRT 29 & 30 Nov 2020

A report of the month in the Eastern Daily Press, Swimmers in Norfolk tackle challenge to support travellers

And see the report on the Outdoor Swimming Society website, Noticeboard section.

You can join in or send messages in our public  Facebook event, donate on the Sponsor me page, and read about the issues in this post about solidarity with GRT.

Discrimination against Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities has been called the last acceptable prejudice. Even people who consider themselves anti-racist don’t always realise the hurt and harm that can be caused, by repeating stereotypes such as blaming the communities without any evidence for litter or for travelling as some have done during this busy and fraught summer.

These communities face a wide range of issues and discrimination – which range from hurtful remarks to material issues affecting all aspects of life. Campaign funds are needed to tackle these deep inequalities in society, improve lives, and provide advice.

Norfolk and Suffolk swimmers who set up this challenge were brought together by a shared love of open water swimming and a commitment to standing up against racism. We are grateful to everyone taking part and supporting and showing solidarity in all the ways!

Photos usually by person named in post next to photo.