Trio of swimmers raise £5,000 for charity

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THREE dedicated fundraising swimmers caused a splash and are now set to hand over almost £5,000 to charity.

Kind Christopher Wood, 27, and Stephen Young, 32, set themselves a target of raising £1,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support when they pledged to swim 2,000 metres each in a town pool.

But that initial target was more than doubled as the motivated pair, who were joined on the day by pal Jim Quigley, completed the challenge and in doing so raised an impressive £4,800.

The benefiting charity is close to the hearts of both Christopher and Stephen.

Christopher’s nana, Edith Wood, 69, was cared for by the nurses after she was diagnosed with cancer of the oesophagus and had to have her stomach removed. Fortunately she beat the disease but Stephen’s granddad, Joe Young, wasn’t so lucky when he sadly passed away in 2007 after he was diagnosed with throat cancer.

Christopher, who lives with Edith in Hartlepool’s Rockpool Close, and Stephen, who lives in the Stockton Road area of town, both wanted to show their support for the charity and set about organising the fundraiser.

And they expressed their delight and thanks to the “hugely supportive” residents and organisations who backed them as they counted up the total after completing the challenge in the pool at English Martyrs RC School and Sixth Form College’s pool last month.

Christopher said: “Beforehand we thought if we could raise a total of £1,000 that would be brilliant.

“So to raise nearly £5,000 is fantastic. The support we got was amazing and we’d like to thank everyone who backed us and donated money.”

“The swim was quite tough.

“We’ve never done lots of swimming in the past so we knew it was going to be difficult but we were dedicated to completing it.

“Jim was planning to do 1,000m but he managed to do the full 2,000m as well so between us we swam 6,000m.”

Christopher and Stephen both go along to sessions run by the Criminal Justice Intervention Team, in Hartlepool, and support people who have previously offended.

Christopher is now collecting all of the money individuals and businesses pledged. And after the satisfaction of raising such an impressive sum, he already has his eyes set on fundraising activities in the future.

“I really enjoyed it and I already have a few ideas for other events or challenges I can do in the future,” he said.

“We are going to do a coast to coast later this year for Macmillan Cancer Support and Cancer Research UK so hopefully we will be able to raise thousands again.”

Christopher is appealing for anyone with fundraising ideas or who wants to get involved with future fundraisers to contact him on 07582680150.