Revellers dive in for Saundersfoot New Year's Day Swim's 30th birthday dip

Western Telegraph: CELEBRATON DIP: Saundersfoot New Year's Day swim celebrates its 30th birthday in 2014. Picture: Gareth Davies Photography (3207819) CELEBRATON DIP: Saundersfoot New Year's Day swim celebrates its 30th birthday in 2014. Picture: Gareth Davies Photography (3207819)

DESPITE the wet and windy weather, 1,352 swimmers and thousands of spectators welcomed in 2014 at the annual Saundersfoot New Year's Day Swim.

The charitable event is now in its 30th year, and the swimmers embraced the event in some sensational fancy dress.

These included a giant 30th birthday cake from Stepaside Coachworks; the Ashes Cricketers from Malin House, Saundersfoot, the Smarties from Saundersfoot School and Cowboys and Indians from the Old Chemist Inn.

The celebrations included a parade of the event's pioneer swimmers who took part in the first swim in 1984 and singer-songwriter Jay James Picton from Saundersfoot leading the singing of Happy Birthday to swim mascot Charlie Shivers.

Swimmers warmed up with a mass dance led by Sharon Lloyd, and were sent on their way by a firework launch, courtesy of Westcoast Fireworks.

Individual fancy dress winner was Mick Booth, dressed as a giant Charlie's Birthday Breakfast, and he won two tickets to a Wales Six Nations home match this year.

Best group fancy dress winners were Wogan Guest House, who came as Noah's Ark, complete with 30 animals in tow.

They won a round of golf at St Pierre Gold Club in Chepstow. The prizes were donated by Stephen Cole Financial Services.

Said Saundersfoot Festivities chairman Martyn Williams said: "We never thought that 30 years ago we would be here now with such a major event in the local calendar.

"Thirty years on, and this event is getting bigger and better with thousands of pounds being raised for charity. The people from Saundersfoot, the surrounding areas and even farther afield have come out in force to support this marvellous event."

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