Swimmers prepare for Topsham event

PUBLISHED: 14:39 13 August 2009 | UPDATED: 11:37 10 June 2010

MORE than 100 swimmers will make a big splash in Topsham this weekend to take part in what has become a popular, eagerly-awaited contest in the town. Crowds of people will compete in the Ferryman s Swim on Saturday – an event with a one-and-a-half-mile co

MORE than 100 swimmers will make a big splash in Topsham this weekend to take part in what has become a popular, eagerly-awaited contest in the town.

Crowds of people will compete in the Ferryman's Swim on Saturday - an event with a one-and-a-half-mile course from the jetty to Turf Lock, to raise money for the Estuary League of Friends.

Topsham ferryman Mike Stevens, responsible for launching the challenge, said: "I set it up four years ago because through working down here, I one day thought I would like to swim from here to Turf.

"I said to myself that if I was going to do it, I might as well make it into a charity event."

"There was so much support from local people in the first year of the swim especially because of the amount of money it raised and so many turned out."

Aside from his ferryman duties, Mike has also proved himself to be a keen athlete and still hold's the world record for underwater endurance which he set in his scuba gear in 1986.

The open-water challenge will feature as part of a blockbuster weekend of activities in the town.

The Topsham Music Connective, a new community networking group, perform on both days.

And, a tug-of-war contest will be held between the Turf lock and the Passage House pub over the river, as well as an all-day hog roast and a performance by Exeter Morris Dancers on Sunday.

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