The bunting was fluttering in the chill breeze and light drizzle of a grey January morning, it hadn't stopped the crowds gathering for the 2011 Cold Water Swimming Championship at Tooting Bec Lido. Swimmers from all over the country and as far abroad as Lithuania had come together to compete in icy widths of the pool.
Fancy hats were de rigueur in the head up breaststroke heats, Sue (lane 4) and Elizabeth (lane 3) are just finishing their races above.
Races start in the water, the marshals were all doing a wonderful job so that no was left standing in the cold water. Competitors clothes were walked around the pool to the finishing side for when they got out. Carl Richards is the far swimmer getting in.
Some hats were bigger than others, I expect Carl Reynolds was slightly impeded by the size of his horns. The real event for both Carls will be the endurance race of five lengths in the afternoon, a pity I couldn't stay to watch it.