Mark’s Swimming the Severn

Mark Lewis, owner of Hadley Park House Hotel, Telford is embarking on something of a challenge having decided to swim the equivalent of the UK’s longest river, the River Severn, in aid of the Severn Hospice and Anthony Nolan charities.

In Mark’s own words, he described the incentive to undertake such a challenge after something of a ‘mid-life crisis’ whereby he decided to take stock of things. “My father had a heart attack at 52 and I knew that I needed to do something positive as basically I was an accident waiting to happen. I started out back in July and joined a local slimming club which helped to kick start things. I wanted to inspire other family members so decided to balance the healthy eating with regular exercise and started swimming.”

“With the swimming, I set myself several challenges along the way, but I wanted a really big challenge to give me an ongoing incentive. Swimming the equivalent of the River Severn seemed an obvious choice, after all, it is the longest river in the UK. But, I wanted to give something back so have decided to swim for charity. The Severn Hospice seemed the perfect fit – not just the Severn connection but the fact that they so such fantastic work for local people. I have decided to split any sponsorship between the Severn Hospice and Anthony Nolan who also do phenomenal work.”

Mark is completing the challenge in a local swimming baths and is tracking his journey via the Swim Fit Challenge website, but plans to tackle open water once he reaches the Telford area. Mark is, as described by fellow colleagues ‘shrinking away’ having already lost 5 stone, with an additional 2 stone target.

Looking forward, Mark confides that his next ambition is to swim in open water and has set his sights on tackling the Channel.

If you’d like to sponsor Mark, he’d really appreciate it!  There’s more details on our Charity Page.

About the Severn Hospice: 

Severn Hospice is an independent charity that cares for people who are living with complex and progressive illness. Their aim is to sustain the quality of their life and to provide relief from pain and other distressing symptoms. Because incurable illnesses affect whole families we offer the same loving support, help and counselling to their families, friends and carers.

Severn Hospice first opened their doors in 1989 after a decade of fundraising in Shropshire and Mid Wales led by Shelia Laws, founder Chairman of the Hospice. Since opening they have cared for over 21,000 patients (that’s the capacity of Shrewsbury Town, AFC Telford and Welshpool Town’s football grounds combined). The Severn Hospice now cares for approximately 2800 patients each year.


About Anthony Nolan: 

Anthony Nolan is a pioneering charity that saves the lives of people with blood cancer who need a blood stem cell, or bone marrow transplant. In 1974, Anthony Nolan’s mother, Shirley, set up the world’s first bone marrow register to match donors with people who desperately needed a transplant.

Now, every day, the Anthony Nolan charity help two people in need of a lifesaving transplant by using their register to find remarkable donors who have matching stem cells, or bone marrow.

A UK charity with international reach; Anthony Nolan carries out world class research into stem cell matching and transplants to improve outcomes for all patients.


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