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Swimmers needed to carry the We Remember Them 2021 relay baton around the UK

In 2018 hundreds of swimmers around the country came together to remember our service men and women for WE REMEMBER THEM – raising over £30,000 for the Royal British Legion. Now We Remember Them is coming back in 2021 as WRT2021, this time as a national relay to remember and support our NHS key workers.

Teams and individuals will carry a specially-made baton in relay legs around the country, as they do some kind of fundraising challenge. The relay will take place in the summer and autumn of 2021; and over 200 runners, swimmers, cyclists, canoeists and climbers have already signed up.

We’d love every open water group in the country to take part in the relay and swim with the baton. So far we have swimmers who will carry the relay baton in Coniston Water, Ullswater, Bala Lake, Redricks Lake – and we hope the Humber Estuary. One club has even said they’ll swim to the London Aquatics Centre with the baton – then get out the river and swim in the Olympic pool. There’ll also be a family-fun weekend of open water swim relay events in September – more about this next year.

We’re connecting the open water relay swims with cyclists and runners, who will carry the baton from one club to another. It’s a logistical challenge but Google Maps is making this easier and we’ll be able to track the baton’s progress around the UK using Strava.

Inside the (waterproof) baton will be a poem that some relay teams will take to their local NHS hospitals and read to the staff there. The baton will have a small carabiner to attach it to a tow float or similar, to make it easy to swim with.

The WRT2021 relay will raise money for the Laura Hyde Foundation, a small charity that is trying “to ensure all medical and emergency services personnel have access to the best mental health support network”, which is so important as frontline medical staff struggle with what they have to deal with in this pandemic.

Find out more:

Also, please search Facebook for “WeRememberThem2021” to find out more about the relay.

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Outdoor Swimmer is the magazine for outdoor swimmers by outdoor swimmers. We write about fabulous wild swimming locations, amazing swim challenges, swim training advice and swimming gear reviews.