Diving Fund Raiser Jun16 copyThe divers will include two newlyweds Anne Marie and Winston Grealy who fell in love while scuba diving and will each be swimming 53 lengths to raise funds for ActivLives and encourage more people to get involved in a sport later in life.

The fundraising event is the brainchild of fellow Billericay Sub-Aqua Club advanced diver Steve Barnes, 63, a retired academic, author and Trustee of ActivLives. Steve said, “ActivLives is a great organisation, it’s staff and volunteers encourage and motivate younger and older people to get and keep active both physically and mentally. The sessions also enable people to meet and make friends, which helps to reduce social isolation and loneliness.’

“After a club dive night at Billericay I was chatting with some other members and telling them how much we, as a charity, needed funds for equipment and systems to aid the work of the staff and volunteers. We came up with the idea of swimming the equivalent distance of crossing the channel, but underwater in the Crown Pools. We have members of iDive involved and divers from the town’s DiveLine dive shop too, who are also providing all the compressed air for the event, and contributing safety support and other equipment. It’s an eight lane pool so with eight divers going at a time we should manage the task in just under three hours. However, it won’t be easy. It’s going to be really hard work.”

Keith Jessop of Dive Line which is one of East Anglia’s oldest diving centres and who is also sending members to take part in the event, said: “It’s a brilliant idea, and a really unusual way to raise money for the charity. We’ll be providing all the equipment and also helping provide safety cover. It should be a great day.”

If you would like to support the event why not come and join us between 5pm and 8pm, (£2 admission fee) to cheer on the divers, plus a raffle and refreshments. If you would like to sponsor the event in aid of ActivLives you can donate on: www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Divetheenglishchannel