Lions’ pledge after records set at poolside

Parents and supporters cheer on the teams at the LSA Lions swimarathon
Parents and supporters cheer on the teams at the LSA Lions swimarathon

Lytham St Annes Lions have pledged the life-saving objectives of their 30th annual charity swimarathon will be met in full - despite the cash raised falling slightly short of the £15,000 target.

A highest-ever total of 59 teams – adding more than 470 swimmers of all ages – took part in the event at St Annes YMCA Pool, raising almost £11,000 in sponsorship cash.

Contributions from Beaverbrooks jewellers and other sponsors took the total raised to a best-ever total £13,500 – and despite the £1,500 shortfall, the Lions have promised there will be no compromise in their aim to continue their life-saving aims.

More than £30,000 raised over the last three swimarathons has allowed the Lions to fund defibrillators for Fylde schools and health screenings for more than 200 young people via the charity CRY (Cardiac Risk In the Young).

This year, they set the £15,000 target to pay for more CRY health screenings, plus healthy heart advice in the classroom for every primary school pupil in Lytham St Annes via the charity Heartbeat – and the Lions were delighted that so many swimmers rallied round to set new records for the swimarathon, which has raised around £200,000 for various charities over the last three decades.

“It was a marvellous day and there is no sense of disappointment at all that we fell slightly short of the target set,” said Lions spokesman Colin Holt.

“We will look at our finances and make sure all the objectives we set are met in full.

“It was brilliant to see new records set in terms of the number of teams taking part and the amount of money raised and we are so grateful to the participants and sponsors and everyone who helped us raise such a wonderful total.”

Fylde mayor Coun Peter Hardy, who officially started this year’s event with his wife and mayoress Sheila Hardy said: “Raising £13,500 for life-saving charities is a marvellous achievement that again shows how generous Fylde people are.

“Almost 500 swimmers of all ages took part in Sunday’s swim and it was a pleasure to chat with so many of them. I’d like to thank them all on behalf of Fylde residents – they could all benefit one day from the volunteers’ good work in aiming to save lives.”

n Swimarathon picture special – page 40 and 41.