Submariner’s splash for cash in Loch Lomond and the Thames

A submariner who could not swim 18 months ago is tackling two gruelling open water swimming events.

Chris Bowns (centre) with friends and colleagues Laura Bennet and Ed Robbins who supported him during the Loch Lomond swim.
Chris Bowns (centre) with friends and colleagues Laura Bennet and Ed Robbins who supported him during the Loch Lomond swim.

Chris Bowns, who is based at Faslane, joined the Great Scottish Swim on Loch Lomond last Saturday.

And the engineering technician will soon be heading south for the Great London Swim, taking place in the Thames on August 30.

“When I joined the navy I couldn’t swim,” said Chris.

“I had to have lessons at my local swimming pool in Ely, Cambridgeshire. I’ve never looked back and one day hope to swim the Channel.”

He aims to raise £250 for HCPT The Pilgrimage Trust, a charity which offers pilgrimage holidays to Lourdes for disabled and disadvantaged people.

“I thought a great way of raising money would be to do two open water swims in just two weeks,” he said.

“The Loch Lomond swim was the first time I’ve swam a distance outdoors in the UK. I have been practising in the pool at Clyde Naval Base and went swimming in the sea on holiday in Malta, but Loch Lomond was just a bit on the cooler side!”