A SWIMMER from the Lake District will be taking on an incredible challenge to raise funds for charity.

Wayne Singleton, 48, will swim the length of the Cumbrian coast, more than 90 miles from the Solway estuary to Silverdale, for the Brathay Trust.

He will be out at sea for between seven and 10 days depending on tides and weather conditions, covering an average of 10 miles a day, with six hours in the water and six hours rest.

Wayne, who is an athletics coach, mountain leader and local radio presenter had hoped to swim across the Channel before the age of 50 after completing the 11-mile length of Windermere swim last year.

He said: “This particular route hasn’t been done before as one swim, though Sean Conway has swum the entire west coast from Land’s End to John O’Groats in four months.

“Ross Edgley has actually swum all the way around the island of Great Britain in five months.

“But this will have a defined entry and exit point so that it can become the focus of a challenge for others in the future.”

Wayne will start at Bowness on Solway, swimming into the river Eden and out into the Irish Sea, finishing at Silverdale where there’s an access road near Holgates caravan park.

He will be supported by kayak paddlers and will have more substantial boat support for the final section of the journey beyond Barrow, around Walney island and across Lancaster Sound.

He calls it an adventure, not an endurance swim, “so if one day I only manage one mile because of the conditions, it won’t be a problem.”

Wayne is aiming to do the challenge in 12 months’ time, next September, and is looking for three levels of support: business sponsorship for the attempt, donations for the charity, and practical help from paddlers and people living near the coast who might be able to accommodate him overnight. So far, the Cumbrian Tea Company, and Kalisan UK of Milnthorpe, have stepped up with sponsorship.

It’s a difficult and complex adventure but Wayne is driven by a passion to help Brathay Trust, a multi-faceted social enterprise that touches the lives of thousands of young people in real need every year. “It’s all about supporting young people in Cumbrian communities who find themselves in challenging circumstances.

"I have seen first-hand the impact that this charity has on young people in my own community.”

Wayne is no stranger to Brathay; each year he is the finish line commentator for the ASICS Windermere Marathon and Brathay 10in10 challenge.

He added: “And every year I sit there and wonder, could I do that? I can run, but at the moment, after struggling with two bouts of long-Covid, I’m a better swimmer than runner.”

Scott Umpleby, Fundraising Manager at Brathay, said: “Brathay is able to help thousands of disadvantaged children and young people each year due to the generosity of many funders and donors.

"Wayne has been a valued supporter of the Trust for many years and this huge challenge will raise funds to support local young people.

"It will also provide an opportunity to promote Brathay’s work across the County. We all look forward to following his progress and supporting him during the swim next year.”

Companies who want to be associated with the challenge and might be able to help are asked to contact Wayne on 07793 532830

To make a donation go to: https://justgiving.com/fundraising/soltosil.