30 hour swimming relay underway in Cork town

30 hour swimming relay underway in Cork town

The swimming is accompanied by a programme of poolside performances at Midleton College and tickets are available for spectators to come and watch some of the event. The initiative will also be live-streamed. Picture: Jim Coughlan

A 30-hour swimming relay is ongoing in Midleton town, today and tomorrow.

The swimming is accompanied by a programme of poolside performances at Midleton College and tickets are available for spectators to come and watch some of the event. The initiative will also be live-streamed on Twitch.

The aquatic project is the work of artist Vanessa Daws and is called 'Swimming a Long Way Together'. Vanessa Daws is a visual artist and long-distance swimmer living in Dublin. She has swam the 22km length of Lough Mask in Co Galway.

The idea was inspired by 20th-century pioneer swimmer Mercedes Gleitze.

In 1930 Mercedes performed an ‘Endurance Swim’ in Cork at the Eglinton Baths (since closed), where she swam for 30 hours continuously. There were large crowds of spectators; some say 4,500 people visited the Eglinton Baths over that time. There was continuous music and entertainment on the pool deck, people would read to Mercedes as she swam, and she would sign autographs.

Swimming a Long Way Together is being organised in collaboration with Water Safety Ireland. The project is funded by the Arts Council Open Call Award 2021 and 50% of swim ticket proceeds will go to support the important work of Water Safety Ireland members in teaching swimming and lifesaving.

The event will be livestreamed via Twitch. The link is available on thewebsite and social media.

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