A new swim challenge – Swim 21 – is being launched this week as part of efforts to raise £1m for the refurbishment of Henley’s Trinity Hall.
The challenge is being set by the Henley Mermaids who are again embarking on a series of challenges to raise money for this year’s charity – the Henley Community Hub.
The Community Hub project, which is being led by Laura Reineke, will see the refurbishment of the dilapidated Trinity Hall on Harpsden Road. It will become the home for Henley Music School and a flexible community space for a range of user groups, with counselling rooms, a recording studio, performance space and flexible space for community groups to use. The aim is to decarbonise the building and ensure it is fit for the next 100 years.
The Mermaids are inviting residents, community groups and families to get involved and participants are being encouraged to swim 21 miles between now and August to raise money for the ambitious project.
“We’d love people to get involved and it’s so fun and simple,” said Mermaid Laura. “Just fill in the form, pay £21, swim 21 miles at your own pace between now and August, log your swims and get a badge. It will be a fantastically fun way to build swim fitness and raise money for a worthy cause.”
For people who want a bit more of a challenge, they can swim the full 21 miles over a few days in a relay – just like a Channel Relay. “The great thing about this is it’s so flexible,” said Laura.
The five women – Laura Reineke, Joan Fennelly, Fiona Print, Susan Barry and Jo Robb – will aim to complete a range of swimming challenges as part of efforts to raise £1m for the Community Hub.
Mermaid Laura is in training to swim the 21 mile English Channel from Dover to Calais while the other Mermaids – Joan, Jo, Susan and Fiona – are preparing to swim the 21 mile monster-filled length of Loch Ness.
“We are so excited to be embarking on another set of challenges and this year, the charity is one that is in our home town,” said Joan. “We desperately need wonderful, warm and flexible community spaces and we Mermaids are proud to be supporting the Community Hub.”
The Henley Mermaids have raised more than £90,000 over the past three years for different charities.
Anyone who would like to get involved in the Swim21 Challenge is welcome to join at: https://www.henleymermaids.com/swim21