Europe’s biggest open water swim series comes to Loch Lomond

Great Swim, Europe’s biggest open water swimming series, has opened its fifth event of 2013. The Great Scottish Swim will take place in the breath-taking surroundings of Loch Lomond for the first time on the 24th August this year. Organisers, Nova International, expect over 2,000 people from around Scotland and across the UK to take part.

Fiona Logan, Chief Executive of Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park Authority said, “We’re proud to be able to host the Great Scottish Swim and attract this exciting event to Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park. This event attracts participants from around the country and will bring local economic benefits for businesses in the Park.

“In this, the Year of Natural Scotland, we are keen to encourage people to explore what’s on their doorstep and experience the great outdoors. Our hope is that people taking part in the event and spectators alike will explore further afield and find out what else the National Park has to offer.”

The event, which was previously held at Strathclyde Country Park, is geared towards swimmers of all abilities. Participants can choose from half mile, one mile or two mile challenges - the event will also include an elite race, with world class athletes in a head-to-head competition.

Alex Jackson, event director at the Great Swim Series said, “The relocation of the Great Scottish Swim to the iconic location of Loch Lomond this year will provide a spectacular backdrop for a world class event.”

The Great Scottish Swim Loch Lomond will join the other four events in a series which boasts over 22,000 participants in locations throughout the UK including; Lake Windermere in Cumbria, the Royal Victoria Dock in London, Salford Quays in Manchester and Alton Water Reservoir near Ipswich.

Jackson added, “2012 was an amazing year for sport in the UK; we hope to see many of those who were inspired last summer come along and try a new activity like open water swimming in 2013.”

“Swimming as an activity is very accessible, many of our participant’s already swim at local pools and the next logical step is to take their skills to the open water -  if you can manage 32 lengths of a pool, you can complete a half mile swim - and have a great time doing it!”

Councillor David McBride, Convener of Environment and Economic Development at West Dunbartonshire Council, said: “Sport is a fantastic way of inspiring local people to be healthier and more active and for that reason I’m thrilled we will be hosting this international event. We also passionately believe that Loch Lomond and West Dunbartonshire are fantastic tourist destinations, and so we’re delighted that the Great Swim will attract thousands to come and see that for themselves.”

Paul Bush OBE, Chief Operating Officer for EventScotland said: “Taking place in one of Scotland’s most iconic locations, the Great Scottish Swim will undoubtedly be one of the most popular mass participation events of the year. The event promises to be an exciting day out for the whole family. 2013 is the year of natural Scotland, and I am sure many of this year’s competitors will be attracted by the stunning scenery at Loch Lomond; from the water itself to the spectacular landscape surrounding it.”

Entries are now open for the Great Scottish Swim at Loch Lomond Shores, a 40 minute drive from Glasgow City Centre, on the 24th August 2013.

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