The first Sedbergh School team to enter the Great North Swim returned from Lake Windermere on Sunday having raised £3,000 for the MS Society and £1,000 for Bendrigg Lodge Trust. The Mile team also won the Female Team Challenge.

Ten girls from Robertson House, one pupil from Casterton, Sedbergh Preparatory School, and five members of staff all completed Half Mile or Mile challenges, motivated by their combined desire to raise money for the MS Society. Anne Fleck swam with the team and raised £1000 for local charity The Bendrigg Trust.

The Great Swim Series is the UK’s biggest exhibition of open water swimming. Staged in clean and safe lakes, lochs and docklands nationwide, distances include 1Ž2 mile, one mile, two miles and 5k courses. A spokesperson for Great Swim said: “It is a fantastic challenge for all abilities. More than 30,000 competitors signed up to take part, raising thousands of pounds for charity.” 

Hayley Christy, Housemistress of Robertson House, said: “Our main motivation for choosing the MS Society was to support our School chaplain’s wife. The charity has purchased a wheelchair for Maxine Sweeting, who is a former primary school teacher and now works in Sedbergh School’s Music Department.

Training was hard, even though we are all active people. We started in the School swimming pool for a few weeks and built up to outdoor acclimatisation sessions in Lake Windermere. It was a fantastic experience for the girls and staff, and a new sport for us all. It was exhilarating yet daunting at the same time. 

“The camaraderie was amazing between us all and the atmosphere at the Great North Swim was really special. We are now completely hooked and hopefully, this is just the beginning of a new sport at Sedbergh. The staff who were involved in this are also entering the Derwentwater Epic swim.”


Half mile

Imogen Duncalf (CSPS) 15.53 53rd
Tabby Holdsworth 16.14 64th
Pollyanna Bell 18.55 85th
Isobelle Page 20.03 116th
Kate Russell 20.24 121st
Maria Page 20.27 123rd
Georgia Thomas 21.23 144th
Ms Astin 26.55 283rd


Alex Porter 33.38 933rd
Philippa Hill 34.03 1001st
Mrs Barker (CSPS) 34.41 1093rd
Charlotte Fleming 37.24 1585th
Mrs Ferguson 38.35 1775th
Laura Batty. 41.29 2207th
Mrs Christy 42.45 2358th
Mrs Fleck 52.25 3249th

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