Five-year-old finishes English Channel challenge

PUBLISHED: 18:06 11 October 2011

Esporta club - five year old Joshua Keyes swimming 31 lengths for the Edwards Star Charity Trust. Pictured with dad Anthony and Esporta Club mascots lending their support.

Esporta club - five year old Joshua Keyes swimming 31 lengths for the Edwards Star Charity Trust. Pictured with dad Anthony and Esporta Club mascots lending their support.

Archant

A FIVE-YEAR-OLD boy took part in an English Channel distance swim challenge, completing the last half-mile to raise money for a children's charity.

Joshua Keyes, of Worlebury, attends St Paul’s School and signed up to swim the last 20 lengths of the pool challenge, but carried on for another 12, to achieve the distance of half a mile.

He said: “I was very excited to do the challenge and feel really happy now I’ve finished it.”

The young swimmer joined the Esporta health club challenge to help them raise money for the Edward Starr Charitable Trust, which supports children’s projects, businesses and schools.

Esporta, part of the Virgin Active Group, decided to mirror chairman Robert Starr’s challenge in his campaign Swim4Smiles, which is to swim the length of the Channel, in the club’s swimming pool. The challenge mainly involved adult club members doing several lengths, but as Joshua is a regular swimmer at Esporta, the club asked if he wanted to take part.

Joshua said: “The swim was fine, I didn’t think it was hard work.”

Joshua’s dad, Anthony Keyes swam alongside his son the whole time, and said how proud he was that he went beyond the target.

He said: “I wanted to make sure he was enjoying the swim and didn’t get too tired. He was smiling when he had finished 20 lengths and I knew he could do it. I’m really proud of him.”

Joshua was able to raise £76 for the charity, which was added to the rest of the fund, making just over £400 for Swim4Smiles campaign, to be donated to the trust.

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