Boxing Day English Channel dip in aid of Guernsey Cheshire Home

December 27th, 2012 by Richard Lord

The 13th annual Guernsey Cheshire Home Boxing Day Dip in Cobo Bay, Guernsey began at 10.00 am.

Dave Chester, Castel Parish douzenier, and organiser of the Boxing Day Dip, collecting donations for Guernsey Cheshire Home (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Castel douzenier Dave Chester began the Boxing Day dip for the Beau Sejour Swimming Club in 1999 to raise money in aid of the people who suffered from the terrible flooding in Vargas State, Venezuela.

Participants get prepared for the Boxing Day dip in Cobo Bay (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

When the Boxing Day Dip began in 1999, Dave Chester received the support of four major Guernsey companies that agreed to pay £1 for every person who took part, so each person raised £4.

Kayakers get in position to provide support for those swimming further out from the beach (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

For the last 11 years the money raised by this event has gone solely to Guernsey Cheshire Home.

Spectacators and participants line either side of the Cobo Beach sea wall (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

“The 12th Boxing Day Dip in 2011 raised over £8,000 for Guernsey Cheshire Home,” Dave Chester said.

Boxing Day swimmers line-up in anticipation of the dash to the sea (click image to expand to 1500 pixel width - ©RLLord)

“£40,000 per month is needed to run Guernsey Cheshire Home over and above what is put in by the residents,”  he said.

The Boxing Day Swim participants line-up in anticipation of the dash to the sea (cropped image of the one above - click image to expand - ©RLLord)

“So £8,000 is only about 6 days of running costs.”

Some of the Boxing Day swimmers line-up on Cobo Beach (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

“High dependency is very expensive because nursing staff are required 24 hours per day,” he said.

The dash for the sea begins in some confusion (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

“The money is raised with charity boxes but sponsorship forms are the way forward.”

A close-up of the dash for the sea (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

“Youngsters and office workers can raise anywhere from £20 to £150 per sponsorship form,” Dave Chester said.

Quick start (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

“Guernsey Cheshire Home has an older property and it needs constant maintenance,” he said.

There was a false start by the southern half of the line of Boxing Day swimmers (click image to expand to 2000 pixels wide - ©RLLord)

An estimated 500 people took part in the 2012 Boxing Day Dip in Cobo Bay.

The race across Cobo beach (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

There was great eagerness by the participants to be the first to reach the sea.

Beach sprint (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Any photographer standing between the racing participants and the sea felt like they were being charged down.

Full speed ahead (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Charging towards the sea (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Sprinting across Cobo beach (click image to expand to 2000 pixel width - ©RLLord)

Race to the sea (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Five hundred swimmers entered Cobo Bay on Boxing Day (click image to expand to 2000 pixel width - ©RLLord)

Mark Addlesee of Quantum Cabling Installations Ltd emerges from the sea with two ladies (click image to expand to 1500 pixel width - ©RLLord)

Mark Addlesee of Quantum Cabling Installations Ltd emerges from the sea with two ladies (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Spectators welcome back the Boxing Day Dippers and swimmers (click image to expand to 1500 pixels width - ©RLLord)

Fancy dress was not obligatory but it was encouraged to add to the festive fund raising occasion.

Sharon Jones in light blue t-shirt, and Anna Bowditch wrapped in the London Olympics flag come out of the sea (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Anna Bowditch has participated in the Boxing Day dip for a couple of years. She is a nurse who has nursed people at Guernsey Cheshire Home.

Sharon Jones in the light blue t-shirt with Anna Bowditch wrapped in the London Olympics flag (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Geoff Jehan in the English Channel on Boxing Day (click image to expand to 1500 pixel width - ©RLLord)

Brothers Graham and Geoff Jehan after their swim in Cobo Bay (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Barry Samson after his swim in Cobo Bay (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Oliver Collas in a Father Christmas suit and Mat van Leuven in the tiger suit emerge from the cold sea (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Oliver Collas and Mat van Leuven said the Boxing Day Swim was for a great cause and they always participated.

“It was great to get into fancy dress too,” Oliver Collas said.

Mat van Leuven was in a tiger suit. He joked that he was in a tiger suit “because there wasn’t a reindeer suit, which would have been much more apt for this time of year.”

Guernsey's Bailiff, Richard Collas, swam in the sea to raise funds for Guernsey Cheshire Home (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Kit Meredith keeps warm after his Boxing Day dip in the English Channel (click image to expand - ©RLLord)

Trevor "Billy" Le Gallez after his swim wears his Superman dressing gown (click image to expand)

After the event many Boxing Day Dippers enjoyed mulled wine and soft drinks courtesy of The Rockmount and hot mince pies courtesy of Warry’s Bakery.

 

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