Environment, Latest News, Personalities, Purbeck, Sport, Swanage, Wildlife | Posted: Tuesday, September 8th, 2020 at 9:35 am | return to news

Mammoth Jurassic Coast swim raises awareness of the plastic beast

A local swimmer who wanted to raise awareness of the problems of plastic waste and the effect it has on the environment has smashed a Jurassic Coast swimming challenge in just over a week.

Oly Rush & Roy Beale
Oly Rush & Roy Beale finishing the Swim Jurassic challenge together.

Plasterer Oly Rush has also exceeded his fundraising target by over £5,000.

He set off on Swim Jurassic from Exmouth on 26 August and arrived on Studland Beach on 4 September. There was one day of the challenge that he did not swim, due to bad weather.

During the 96-mile distance he was accompanied by kayaker Roy Beal who was so delighted when Oly swam into Studland Bay that he leapt into the water to join him.

A crowd of well-wishers was waiting on the slipway to welcome the intrepid swimmer and his support kayaker ashore.

Oly, who didn’t appear the least bit tired after the last leg from Chapman’s Pool to Studland that took over five hours, said, “I just want to keep on swimming.”

His desire to do something to raise awareness about the plight of the Jurassic Coast, a World Heritage Site, came after Durdle Door hit the national headlines when thousands of people descended on it in one day, and left their rubbish behind for a band of volunteers to clean up.

One of those volunteers was Oly. He has regularly cleaned the Jurassic Coast beaches in his spare time and remains vigilant as a beach cleaner throughout the year. He says his favourite spot is Chapman’s Pool in Worth Matravers. This remote coastal area could easily be ruined by plastic if it wasn’t for volunteers like Oly and his friend Roy Beal who spend hours collecting and removing it from the shore, along with other litter.

Roy operates cleanjurassicacoast.uk, a group of like minded individuals who have banded together to help keep the coast clean from rubbish by doing regular beach cleans along the Jurassic Coast and throughout the swimming challenge, as well as looking out for his friend, he collected plastic items that were floating in the water.

Oly continued his swim on Saturday 5 September arriving at Highcliffe Beach to round up the total distance to 100 miles.

Oly exceeded his fund-raising target of £2,000 for the charities Clean Jurassic Coast and Go Pladdle. With donations pushing just over £7,000, he has received tremendous support, but if you would like to donate, it’s not too late. Please follow the link:

www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/swimjurassic

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