Goodenough College Alumni, Endurance swimmer Lewis Pugh (WGH 05-06) has completed The Long Swim.
The Long Swim is an endurance swimming challenge to swim the length of the English Channel in support of cleaning up the oceans.
The 48-year-old finished the 560km (348 mile) gruelling swim from Land's End in Cornwall to Dover in Kent in 49 days, and was was greeted at Shakespeare Beach by Environment Secretary Michael Gove. The swim is the equivalent of completing the Dover to Calais crossing 16 times.
The environmental campaigner and UN Patron of the Oceans began the challenge on 12 July, swimming 10 to 20km (six to 12 miles) every day. Lewis said he felt "relieved and exhilarated":
"It's been very, very long, we've been going for 49 days and I'm exhausted, physically exhausted, mentally exhausted, so delighted to be here."
He is estimated to have made 500,000 to 750,000 strokes along the journey and completed the challenge despite being told he had tendonitis just 10 days before the end and being advised to rest by his physiotherapist.
Lewis is a long standing campaigner for marine issues, and the Long Swim was to raise awareness for his cause. He said:
"What has really shocked me is just what I haven't seen - so I've seen a few fish, I've seen a few dolphins, a few birds, lots of jellyfish, but virtually nothing else - the oceans around the United Kingdom are so badly over-fished. We have this one opportunity now to protect the waters around the UK. If we don't do that there simply won't be any fish left for our generation. Forget about future generations if we don't take action right now."
Congratulations on your magnificent achievement Lewis!