Bramley woman from KPMG Reading swims the Channel

Zoe Sadler climbs out of the water in France

Zoe Sadler climbs out of the water in France

First published in News

AN INCREDIBLE swimmer beat illness, fierce tides and jellyfish to successfully conquer the English Channel – raising thousands for a local hospice in the process.

Bramley woman Zoe Sadler, 38, completed the epic 21-mile swim across one of the world’s busiest shipping lanes in exactly 16 hours.

Zoe, a manager at KPMG, in Reading, said: “The swim started at 2am and it was pitch black for the first three hours.

“Sixteen hours later, I stood up on a beautiful sandy beach in the sun at Cap Blanc Nez in France. It was a perfect place to finish. I swam well throughout and genuinely enjoyed it.

“Along the way, we had a fair few dramas – I suffered from violent sickness, I encountered jellyfish and a microclimate mid-Channel when it suddenly got really choppy.

“The hardest bit was after 11 hours when I was only three miles off the coast of France and I could see houses. The tide turned, meaning I was being sent back up the Channel in the direction of Norway.”

It took Zoe, of Farriers Close, four-and-a-half hours of intense swimming to break through the tide and make it to the shallower water.

She said: “Even though I was working my hardest, I was merely maintaining my distance from the French coastline.”

She has so far raised more than £4,000 for St Michael’s Hospice , in Aldermaston Road , Basingstoke, and hopes people will continue to donate through

Though not in any hurry to replicate her mammoth solo Channel swim of July 23, Zoe is taking part in a three-person Channel relay next June, having previously taken part in a similar event.

A member of Basingstoke Bluefins swimming club, she also hopes to swim the length of Lake Windermere and the length of Lake Zurich, in Switzerland, the Gibraltar Straits, and a circumnavigation of Manhattan Island.

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