Sign up for swim

REGISTRATION has now opened for a nationwide charity swim, with several pools in Northumberland taking part.

Swimathon, the world’s biggest fund-raising swim, is about to get even bigger, joining forces with British Swimming’s Big Splash campaign, the BBC, Marie Curie Cancer Care and Sport Relief to promote what is hoped will be the biggest Swimathon Weekend ever.

The Swimathon Weekend 2012 takes place from Friday to Sunday, April 27 to 29.

It will give thousands of swimmers the opportunity to raise vital funds for Marie Curie Cancer Care and Sport Relief through Swimathon’s established distance challenges and the new Big Splash Mile for Sport Relief.

Swimmers who sign up in January will receive half-price entry as well so there’s no excuse not to register and get your goggles out right away.

Swimmers taking part in Swimathon for Marie Curie Cancer Care will be able to choose from the 2.5k, 5k or Team 5k challenges and those opting to raise money for the Big Splash Mile for Sport Relief can take part individually or as part of a team to complete the mile.

Through the choice of distance challenges in the Swimathon Weekend, participants can choose whether they would like to raise money for Marie Curie Cancer Care or Sport Relief.

The Swimathon Weekend 2012 also marks Swimathon’s 25th anniversary.

The event will be hosted in over 640 pools across the UK and will provide swimmers with a personal challenge, a goal to train for and great causes to support.

The Big Splash campaign is a joint initiative by British Swimming and the BBC aimed at helping promote swimming, inspiring people to learn how to swim and to swim more regularly, as well as fund-raising for Sport Relief.

In Northumberland, swimmers can take part in one of four pools:

Alnwick – Willowburn Sports and Leisure Centre

Morpeth – Riverside Leisure Centre

Hexham – Wentworth Leisure Centre

Prudhoe – Waterworld

Anthony Kendall, the Swimathon Foundation chairman, said: “2012 will be a very special year.

“Swimathon will be celebrating its 25th anniversary and we are keen to help encourage the UK to participate in more sport.

“Teaming up with the Big Splash in 2012 will be a great way to get more people in the pool and more people fund-raising for both Marie Curie Cancer Care and Sport Relief.”

British Swimming and ASA chief executive David Sparkes said: “We are delighted to be working with Swimathon.

“Their 25 years of experience in organising charity swim events will ensure that, through this partnership, the event is the most successful yet, with more swimmers and more vital funds being raised for these worthwhile causes.”

To enter visit rfi.swimathon.org/enter_now.php

Enter in January and receive half-price entry. Half-price discount applies to the first 10,000 full-price Swimathon Weekend online Distance Challenge entries submitted and paid for before Tuesday, January 31.