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Cheltenham superman Sean Conway finishes record-breaking swim

By Gloucestershire Echo  |  Posted: November 11, 2013

By Michael Yong

  • TAKING ON CHALLENGES: Sean Conway is set to become the first person to swim the length of Britain

  • SURROUNDED: Sean with some underwater visitors

  • SeanConway

  • SeanConway

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SUPERHUMAN swimmer Sean Conway has successfully reached John O'Groats, the final stop in his 1,000-mile swim of the UK.

Mr Conway,32, hit the Scottish landmark at around 12.06pm today, becoming the first man to swim the length of Britain.

The Charlton Kings man set off on his mammoth swim from Sennen Cove harbour in West Cornwall.

He is raising money for charity War Child, which helps protect children from the brutal effects of conflict and rebuild their lives.

Many people have walked or cycled the distance, but Sean is no ordinary athlete.

The challenge, which has taken nearly twice the original time planned, involved Sean doing the equivalent of an English Channel crossing nearly every day, raising more than £5,500 for charity so far.

Speaking to the Echo yesterday, he said: "It has been great; really cold, but I met a lot of great people on the way."

"It is by far the biggest challenge I have taken up, and it was freezing in the water.

"It is the most fascinating adventure ever, but I'm now looking forward to finishing and coming home."

Travelling with Sean in a small boat, his crew included his good friends, crew captain Em Bell, head of press Owain Wyn-Jones, and skipper Jez.

Personal trainer Steve Mellor and swimming coach Mark Kleanthous helped him prepare for the challenge.

"The reception I have received in places where we have got on shore has been incredible, the support has been just incredible," he said.

"I didn't really know what I was getting into, but I have had the privilege of seeing the British coastline in a way most people will never do, and I am thankful for that.

"It is a side of the country I really enjoyed. I've met all sorts of people, including fishermen and other people living on the coast, all of whom have been amazing.

"This is the hardest thing I have ever done. That said, I'm really glad I have done it. I don't think anyone will try it ever again, if they know the reality of it. If someone wants to, I will definitely help them, but it will be cold!"

Last year, the iron man did a world-record 16,000-mile cycle, which he completed despite suffering a spinal fracture during the journey.

To donate to War Child, go to justgiving.com/SwimmingBritain.

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