Music teacher splashes out for 60km birthday challenge

SOME people celebrate their birthday with a party – but one intrepid Jersey woman chose to mark hers by swimming 60 kilometres.

Mim Poingdestre celebrates after her final swim Picture: JON GUEGAN
Mim Poingdestre celebrates after her final swim Picture: JON GUEGAN

When Mim Poingdestre reached the age of 60, she set herself the challenge of swimming a kilometre a day for 60 days to raise money for the Jersey Lifeboat Association.

She began on 19 April and finished this week, raising £1,205 for the charity in the process.

Mrs Poingdestre completed the challenge in the pool at Les Quennevais Sports Centre, where she works part-time as a lifeguard, and in the sea at Bouley Bay.

She has been a keen swimmer all her life but first discovered sea swimming when she moved to Jersey aged 25. And she rediscovered it, and the unique exhilaration it brings, during the winter.

‘When everything was locked down, I was swimming in the sea so I got acclimatised to it again,’ she said. ‘In the winter it was about 6°C but now it’s about 13°C or 14°C.

‘It’s just incredible. You can feel all your anxieties drift away.’

Mrs Poingdestre juggles her work as a pool lifeguard alongside her day job as a music teacher and examiner. It was while she was keeping an eye on the swimmers that she had the idea of raising money for those who help to keep people safe in the water.

She said: ‘I was just watching people swimming up and down and I wondered what I could do to help. [The JLA] go out to rescue foolhardy people like myself and they rely on donations. It’s to reflect the valuable work they do.’

She said her family was backing her efforts and added: ‘They’ve all been really supportive. They’ve been cheering me on and they’ve all made donations.’

Anyone who would like to make a donation is asked to visit justgiving.com/crowdfunding/60ksin60days.

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