Sophie Etheridge completes solo Channel swim

Sophie Etheridge from Godmanchester, Cambridgeshire has completed the longest ever one way solo English Channel swim in 29 hours and 4 minutes (pending ratification).
Sophie has Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, which she developed after an accident. She is the first person with her disability to make the crossing.

Sophie’s Channel swim has been an ambition since a relay attempt was thwarted by illness.

As well as having to control and manage her pain throughout the swim, Sophie had to overcome many physical and mental challenges along the way. These included multiple bouts of sea sickness, being thrown around by the waves and huge ferries and tankers passing her by.

The reasons behind Sophie’s swim and what she says kept her fighting throughout it are:

  • To raise awareness of open water swimmers with disabilities and show what they can achieve with the right support
  • To raise funds for the STARLIGHT campaign to help upskill swimming teachers to become disability specialist swimming teachers
  • To show people with and without disabilities to never put a limit on your abilities. If you want something, are willing to work for it and have the right support and people around you, you can achieve amazing things


To donate to Sophie’s campaign please visit:

Sophie Etheridge

A massive congratulations to Sophie from all of the team at Living Sport on an incredible achievement. Sophie’s inspirational story shows that a disability doesn’t have to limit you and she is keen to emphasize ‘you can do anything you put your mind to – it just might be done in a slightly different way to how someone else would do it! ‘

If you are interested in getting involved in open water swimming or taking part in a training course to become a specialist disability swimming teaching please contact

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