Hundreds strip off for naked sea swim

NAKED AMBITIONS ... Hundreds of people brave the chilly North sea at Druridge Bay, in Northumberland
NAKED AMBITIONS ... Hundreds of people brave the chilly North sea at Druridge Bay, in Northumberland
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THESE dippers certainly weren’t chicken as they made a dash for the sea.

Hundreds stripped off at dawn in an attempt to break the world record by swimming in the North Sea.

The mass dip included children as young as five up to pensioners, and was held for the second year running at Druridge Bay in Northumberland.

It was led by Whitburn woman Jax Higginson, 35, who was among the crowd which gathered to help mark the autumn Equinox.

The regular sea swimmer said: “It was perfect. The sea was like a mill pond and the sky was very clear.

“It wasn’t cold at all. People stayed in for ages, most people were in the water for 10 to 15 minutes – I was in there for nearly half an hour.

“Everybody was just really feeling alive and being part of nature.

“Nobody was shy – everyone just took part fully.

“The atmosphere was really warm, there was a lot of love.

“Most of the registration money was going to charity so that’s £2,000 straight away.

“A gentleman that came last year had his 72nd birthday yesterday and he took part again this year – I think it’s now his birthday celebration.

“There was children aged five and six going in there with their parents.”

Jax was inspired to launch the event after taking part in a previous Guinness World record dip in Wales in 2011.

The event was supported by the National Trust, with all proceeds raised being split between mental health charity MIND and the National Trust’s conservation work along the Northumberland Coast.

But the skinny-dippers fell shy of the current record – which stands at 506 people – but organisers say the 180 who took part fully embraced the liberating experience.