Page last updated at 19:12 GMT, Friday, 9 April 2010 20:12 UK

Brighton Swimming club celebrates 150th anniversary

Brighton Swimming Club members in sea
Brighton Swimming Club was started for those who wanted to sea swim

A swimming club in Sussex has celebrated its 150 anniversary.

Brighton Swimming Club, which is believed to be the oldest in England, was started in 1860 for people who wanted to swim in the sea.

The club currently has more than 350 members which include sea and pool swimmers, synchronised swimmers and water polo players.

To celebrate, each member of the club swam 150 lengths of the 25m pool equating to 3.7km or 2.3 miles each.

Club member Fiona Southwell, who swam the English Channel from Dover to France, said sea swimming was a challenge.

Ms Southwell said: "You're out there in the natural elements so there's nothing like it, every time you go in it's a different mood and a challenge every day."

Club chairman John Ottoway said his mother had got him involved in the club 63 years ago.

Mr Ottoway said: "My mother was also the coach, so I was just brought up in it, and I know most towns by their swimming pools."

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