Woman Swims Around Portsmouth

A Gosport swimmer's completed her latest challenge - she's managed to swim around the whole of Portsmouth.

Anna Wardley completed the 21-mile swim around Portsmouth in seven hours, 20 minutes and 50 seconds. 

The 36-year-old embarked on the swim as part of her Five Island Swim Challenge. 

She has previously completed a swim around Dragonera, off Mallorca, and after today's swim she will target Jersey, Tiree off west Scotland, and the Isle of Wight. 

Ms Wardley, from Gosport, said after finishing the swim: "It was an amazing experience, I am thrilled to have completed it and I would like to say thanks to everyone who supported me on the way round."

The Portsea swim involved Ms Wardley negotiating one of the UK's busiest commercial and naval harbours. By completing the challenge, she became the first person to carry out a solo swim around Portsesa Island recognised by the British Long Distance Swimming Association (BLDSA), the organisation which ratifies such swims in the UK.

The BLDSA rules state that Ms Wardley must wear just a swimsuit, cap and goggles, use no artificial aids and must not make contact with anyone or anything during the swim. In order to meet the BLDSA's requirements for an inaugural record swim, three observers in kayaks accompanied her throughout, each carrying a stopwatch to ensure that her time was recorded accurately. 

For the Five Island Swim Challenge, Ms Wardley will cover a total of 150 miles and she hopes to raise £50,000 for the Samaritans, Toe in the Water and Sail Africa. 

Since taking up open water swimming in 2007, she has successfully swum the English Channel, the Gibraltar Strait and the Hellespont Straits between Europe and Asia raising more than £35,000 for charity.

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