Harlaxton College nurse supports the homeless with one mile swim in Hyde Park lake

Lesley Selby swims the Serpentine in Hyde park for charity.
Lesley Selby swims the Serpentine in Hyde park for charity.

A Grantham woman has donned a wetsuit and braved the waters of the Serpentine in Hyde Park to raise money for the homeless.

Lesley Selby swam a mile in the lake of the London Park on Sunday in support of the Salvation Army’s homelessness project.

Lesley Selby with her medal after swimming the Serpentine in Hyde Park for charity.

Lesley Selby with her medal after swimming the Serpentine in Hyde Park for charity.

Lesley, 55, said: “It was certainly a challenge but I enjoyed every minute of it.”

Lesley, a nurse at Harlaxton College, completed the one mile swim in one hour, 21 minutes and 20 seconds.

So far, she has raised more than £570 on her JustGiving page.

Lesley said: “I have always enjoyed swimming and did quite a lot of open water swimming as a child, but, in recent years, this has been a more leisurely swim at my local Health and Fitness Club.  My cousin Beryl managed to convince me that participating in the Serpentine Swim was a jolly good idea and I initially agreed.  Reality was quick to settle in and before I knew it, my daughter and Aunt were helping me into a wetsuit which was an experience in itself.”

She added: “Not only is swimming around the Serpentine Lake a huge and wonderful personal achievement, I am also hoping that I will raise money for an excellent cause – The Salvation Army’s homelessness project.  Homelessness is an issue in every town and city across the United Kingdom and, as a daughter of Salvation Army ministers, I have witnessed how this church and charity can transform the lives of those who are far less fortunate than myself.

“My Salvation Army Church in Nottingham is currently participating in The Big Collection.  This is an annual initiative where members of the public are invited to make a contribution to The Salvation Army and its homelessness projects.  My church along with many other Salvation Army churches, provide hot meals, food parcels, clothing, bedding and a friendly ear to the homeless.  These projects would not exist if it was not for the kind donations from church members and members of the public. 

Thousands of swimmers took part in the first mass participation swim in the Serpentine for charity.

To make a donation to Lesley’s cause go to 
www.justgiving.com