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Open Water

Clevedon Long Swim

Laura Nesbitt is Somerset ASA Open Water Secretary. Laura and Kat Percival have considerable experience in this discipline and are equally involved in County Open Water Coaching duties. View their Contact Details.

Kat also organises our annual Open Water Championships, Inter County Team and English Channel crossings!

Somerset ASA encourages participation in Open Water swimming and provides and promotes development opportunities to enable Coaches, competitors and Officials to progress from pool swimming into Open Water events. 


Open water race practice

Entries are open for Weston-super-Mare’s Open Water Development Series 2018. Event dates at Clevedon Marine Lake (note revised timings):

  • Sunday 27 May 2018 - 750m, 1.5k and 3k.
  • Sunday 10 June 2018 - 1k, 2k, 3k & 5k.
  • Sunday 16 September 2018 (Noon to 5.30pm)  - Events available 1k, 2k 3k & 5k

View details.

The SW Regional and County Open Water Championships took at Preston Beach, Weymouth on 7 July 2018 (results). The 2017 event (results) was also well supported with 44 of the 199 competitors from Somerset and five qualifying for nationals at which two won gold and one bronze.

The Swim England National Open Water Festival returns to Rother Valley Country Park over 29/30 July 2018 for competition incorporating the National Open Water Masters Championships and Team 2km participation event on Sunday, and National Open Water Age Group events on Monday. Pool qualification times remain the same as 2017 but the new distances for 2018 are: 2km for 12 & 13 years; 3km for 14 & 15 years; 5km for 16, 17/18 & 19+ years.

The traditional 1 mile Clevedon Long Swim (from Ladye Bay, under England’s only Grade 1 listed pier to the finish on Clevedon Beach) will take place on 1 July 2018. Entries sold out within 48 hours of opening on 1 Feb 2018 but a waiting list has opened.


We promoted a 2 day course (26 May 2018 and 2 June 2018) with Swim England SW Region to introduce new swimmers aged 12 to 17 years to open water swimming and develop their skills. Almost half the 15 attending the 2017 course were from Somerset.

Within Somerset ASA's 2018/19 Development budget, a funding pot of £2,000 will focus on encouraging more participation in the disciplines of Open Water, Water Polo, Synchronised Swimming and Masters. 


We are keen to recruit officials into this growing element of aquatic sport so you could soon enjoy the benefits of sun, sea and sand whilst judging a swimming event! Please register your interest in training to be an open water official which involves a classroom workshop and practical sessions on beach and boat so that we can organise dates and venues for 2019. Three volunteers from Somerset attended the 2017 course as part of their Level 1 training.

We publicised opportunities to officiate at the Swim England National Open Water Festival 2018 which will be held on Sunday 29 July and Monday 30 July 2018 in Rother Valley Country Park, Sheffield.


We published details of two British Open Water Swimming courses (formerly known as ASA Level 2 Open Water Coaching Courses) at Vobster / Trowbridge (Mar 2018 and July 2018). Your help in sharing details of events and courses within your club and networks is appreciated.

Swim England South West are collating a list of Open Water Coaches in the Region. If you are one or have any within your club, please can you email Virginia Hill (swowsec@gmail.com) with names, club and qualification.



Excerpt from BBC Countryfile Winter Diaries, February 2017 extolling the benefits of cold water swimming.

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