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Swimmingpod is a podcast series from Stanley Ulijaszek, life-long swimmer. I speak with outdoor swimmers of many persuasions, about their swim-projects, how they got into swimming and what the get out of it. Across all seasons and all outdoor swimming pleasures.

The music is Noe Noe by Castro, and Vienna Beat by Radio Pink, both on Blue Dot Sessions.  

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Anna Deacon, and 'Taking the Plunge' 

Anna Deacon is co-author, with Vicky Allen, of the book 'Taking the Plunge', She is a photographer of considerable repute, and has a number of swimming-oriented projects on the go. She talks about these, and more.

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Darrin Roles and the Lock-to-Lock Swim Series

Darrin Roles started and runs the Lock-to-Lock series of events in the Thames in Oxfordshire. This has grown and grown. In the first year from Eynsham to King’s Lock (4 kilometers), then in subsequent years from Farmoor to King’s Lock (6 kilometers) and from Farmoor to Godstow Lock (10 kilometers). In the course of setting up and running these swims, he revived the Oxford Mile (renamed the Oxford Classic Mile) and set up two swim-runs, along the same stretch of the River Thames as the Lock-to-Lock swims. 

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Juliet Turnbull - swimming the Thames her way 

Juliet Turnbull is a very accomplished swimmer, and an artist who turns ideas that churn in her mind as she swims, into art-textiles and embroider-work, works that evoke the sensorial nature of being in the water. She lives on the Thames and swims in it. She is swimming the length of it in sections with her friend Fiona Irwin; she also sings under bridges. The musical link is Abba's 'SOS'. This podcast was recorded in January, when we were both in dry robes, recovering after swimming in a snow flurry, she near Hampton Court, London, me at Eynsham Lock, Oxfordshire.     

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Bluetits Chill Swimmers, with founder Sian Richardson

Sian Richardson is a force, a year-round outdoor swimmer who took her passion for winter swimming in Wales, at the beach near the farm where shehas lived all her life, to a world-wide phenomenon. The Bluetits Chill Swimmers are a social enterprise set up by Sian, now with more than 6,000 members. According to Sian, The Bluetits are ‘Primarily an informal group of adults (mostly women, but men are not excluded) who come together to relax and enjoy time together talking joyful nonsense while setting the world to rights and enjoying time together in the water way from constraints imposed by work and home life’. The music link is John Rutter’s ‘Deep Peace’, sung by Aled Jones – ‘Deep peace, of the running wave to you’.

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Alex Foster's Anthropology of the Serpentine Swimming Club, London

Alex Foster spent the winter months of 2019-2020 learning about winter swimming and cold water immersion at the Serpentine Swimming Club, in Hyde Park, London. This is podcast is about his immersion in the club and its waters, and his MPhil thesis in Medical Anthropology on this topic. The thesis is available here. The music links are James Blake's cover of Don McLean's 'Vincent', and Glenn Gould's 1981 recording of Bach's Goldberg Variations.  

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Nostalgia for Lake Bled Winter Swimming Championships with Jeremy Wellingham and Stanley Ulijaszek 

A nostalgia conversation between Jeremy Wellingham and Stanley Ulijaszek about the Lake Bled Winter Swimming World Championships which took place a year ago, February 2020. We could not have anticipated how the year would unfold, so full of optimism was this event. Helped by the full-to-the-brim enthusiasm of the thousand-plus participants and their friends and family, there was seriousness, friendliness and fun in equal measure. ‘It’s wonderful to be here, it’s certainly a thrill…’


Music link is Brian Eno's 'Music for Airports' performed by the Alaska Orchestra, live-streamed from the Sydney Opera House 2020. 


Frost Swimmers of Gothenberg - 100dagarkallabad 

Three women in Gothenberg, Sweden who swim every day, and bring joy, candles, bubbles and yoga on a surf-board, as well as their friends, to their project of a hundred swims into winter.  

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Sandy Burnett, Musician and Broadcaster, on Water, Music, Music and Water

Sandy Burnett is a Man of Music, especially amphibious in classical waters and jazz streams of consciousness. He is one of the most authoritative classical music broadcasters in the UK, with a huge and impressive CV, which he wears lightly.  He is also an outdoor swimmer, Summer and Winter. In this conversation we discuss great rivers like the Thames and the Rhine, the ocean at Aldeburgh, Suffolk, and music that has been inspired by the flow of water.


The music in this podcast is Sandy himself, improvising, opening of Sea Interlude III, 'Sunday Morning by the Beach' from Benjamin Britten's opera Peter Grimes (Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Conducted by Sir Colin Davis), opening of Bach Cello Suite I (played by Pieter Whispelwey), and Noe Noe and Vienna Beat, both of Blue Note Sessions.


Find Sandy at - 




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Women who swim - Kristie Waller and Judy Pearsall

Judy Pearsall and Kristie Waller are two women who swim together regularly in Oxford and Oxfordshire. They both have a passion for swimming and they share some of their swimming thoughts, memories and plans.