Call goes out to Wiltshire people to make a splash for Diabetes UK

By Jessica Durston - 3 March 2023


A sponsored swimming challenge which raises vital funds for leading charity Diabetes UK returns this spring – and a call has gone out for people from Wiltshire to sign up.

Swim22 will run between 22 March and 22 June, and involves swimming a total of 22 miles –the same distance as the English Channel.

Participants of this fundraiser can take on the challenge at their own pace, in their local pool or the open water, accumulating the miles across the course of the 12 weeks.

All funds raised will go towards Diabetes UK’s work funding life-saving research and ensuring everyone living with diabetes gets the care and support they need.

Actor and Diabetes UK supporter Annette Badland, whose acting credits include EastEnders, Doctor Who, Midsomer Murders and multiple Emmy award-winning comedy Ted Lasso, is encouraging people to take part in the challenge after completing it twice herself in previous years.  

Annette said: “Diabetes UK’s Swim22 challenge is a fantastic way to find a fitter, more confident you. I know first-hand that swimming 22 miles over 12 weeks is no mean feat – but the sense of accomplishment you get at the end of the challenge is unmatchable. And knowing your fundraising efforts are going towards supporting people affected by diabetes, so that they get the support they need, makes all those challenging swims so worthwhile.”

Phaedra Perry, Head of Diabetes UK – South West and South Central, added: “Whether you haven’t swum in a while or you’re a seasoned swimmer, our team will be on hand to offer swimming tips and fundraising advice along the way.

“By taking on Swim22, you’ll not only be swimming towards a healthier you. The money you raise will help fund our vital work, including the development of life-changing treatments and raising awareness of type 2 diabetes and how to manage it by making healthier choices day-to-day.

“So, please, sign up to Swim22 and make a splash for Diabetes UK.”

People taking part can swim alone, or with family, friends, or colleagues.

In addition to the standard 22-mile distance, there are two other challenges to choose from. Participants can choose to do ‘The Half’, covering 11 miles – half the distance to France. For more experienced swimmers, there is the option to take on ‘The Double’ – swimming 44 miles, the equivalent of swimming to France and back again.

The Diabetes UK team say there are some amazing rewards on offer for challengers, including a Swim22 swimming cap, three unique distance medals, to a limited-edition towel for anyone who raises more than £350.

To register for Swim22, those interested can visit

There is no registration fee and no minimum sponsorship for the challenge.

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