Dover training season starts Saturday 4th - details

loneswimmerloneswimmer IrelandCharter Member
edited May 2013 in General Discussion
Michelle Toptalo posted the below details to the Google group and I checked with her that it was ok to post it here (Emma who usually does this posts is a forum member but is away at the moment). These details apply all season if you wish to swim with the Saturday and Sunday training groups. For those of who have never had the pleasure but might have the opportunity, I highly recommended taking the chance to swim in the harbour with many many more similar lunatics filling up the water under Freda's, Michelle, Emma's and Barrie the Shingle Stomper's watchful eyes.

From personal experience, sandals/flipflops are ESSENTIAL in Dover.

Dover training starts on Saturday 28th April at 10 am.

Please arrive in good time to complete any paperwork and be ready to be in the water by 10am.
{Form is attached below this post} It would help the beach volunteers if you could come prepared with your form, photo and cash at the ready.

It is essential that you bring with you:

1. Swim wear. RED hat for solo swimmers / YELLOW hat for relay swimmers.
2. Warm clothing including a hat.
3. Warm drinks / food / money to go buy food.
4. Cash. The costs for this season are: Relay swimmers £5 for the season, Solo swimmers £30 for the season. Dover Group Swimming is run on a volunteer basis. Your contribution is for costs only.

For those of you new to the Dover group you will find us on the beach just at the break between the RYC building and The Gateway flats.

Dover seafront is pay and display and the wardens are quick to react so please bring plenty of change, and prepare to be there several hours.
There is free parking on the road behind the seafront on Sundays, but it is limited.
Permits can be purchased at for those of you who are interested.

Please be aware that Dover Group Swimming does NOT provide safety cover. You swim at your own risk. It is your responsibility to ensure that you have sought relevant medical advice and to know your own limits. To quote Freda "No dead heros please".

In the interest of safety, please adhere to requests by the beach volunteers, most significantly, RED and YELLOW hats only, and please be ready to start on time, this is to make it easier to keep track of swimmers.

I look forward to seeing some familiar faces, and and can't wait to see some new faces embark on the journey of a lifetime.

For those of you who have been involved for many years you may notice a more serious tone. This is not meant to intimidate, it is just a precautionary protection which will hopefully allow this ever expanding group to continue unhindered.

Please come prepared with your form completed, including the photo. I understand that you may feel instantly recognisable but on Dover beach at the height of the season we can't remember what our own faces look like let alone whether you've got 2 noses and wonky ears!



  • Hi, I am looking to come along to some training sessions for a relay this year, are they on every sunday the at the same time? Just checking as will be coming down from essex.

  • loneswimmerloneswimmer IrelandCharter Member
    This post for for last year's details. This year's details aren't out yet, but I'll update when they are. Swimming always on both saturdays and sundays at 9am.

  • ZoeSadlerZoeSadler Charter Member
    Hi, Mich posted the following on the Google group

    Just to confirm that Dover Training starts on 4th May this year.

    9am for solos
    10am for relays

    Given the high number of swimmers and the chillier than average temperatures we are experiencing we would ask that only relay teams due to swim in June join us for the first two weekends.

  • oxooxo Guest
    edited April 2013
    From personal experience, sandals/flipflops are ESSENTIAL in Dover.
    Ditto re Dover 'beach'. Additional comment: it's much easier to get your cold feet into slides than to deal with the thong on flipflops.
  • loneswimmerloneswimmer IrelandCharter Member
    Updated the thread title. Dover weekend training for 2013 starts Saturday 4th May.

    From Michelle:

    Dover training will be every Saturday, Sunday and Bank Holiday Monday from 4th May to the end of September.

    Given the cold weather that we have been experiencing we are asking that only those relay teams swimming in June attend for the first two weekends. There will be plenty of time for those swimming later in the season to get cold after that.


    Solo swimmers will need to bring a RED swimming hat and be on the beach and ready to swim at 9am.
    For solo / long distance swimmers it will be £30 for the season.

    Relay swimmers will need to bring a YELLOW swimming hat and be on the beach and ready to swim at 10am.
    For relay / shorter course swimmers it will be £5 for the season.

    Please be aware that the beach crew are volunteers. While guidance is given this is not formal training, it is not affiliated to any other organisation and no safety cover is provided. SWIM AT YOUR OWN RISK.

    This is not a profit making organisation, your payment will be solely used for swimmer supplies and out of pocket expenses such as parking permits for the beach crew.

    Everyone is welcome but if you have chosen to join us in Dover please respect a few simple guidelines that will help us to help you:

    1. Be on time. It is hard to keep track of swimmers, this becomes almost impossible if people start to arrive at differing times.

    2. Check yourself in and out of each swim. We do not want helicopters out looking for a swimmer who actually tucked up in a cosy café having their lunch!

    3. Keep swimming. The beach crew do not volunteer for you to have a nice chat with your mates while getting wet, and if you are not moving, you are getting colder.

    Note: Relay swimmers who are swimming from July are asked to wait TWO WEEKS before joining the training sessions.

  • for the season 2014 there will be an office open as a focus for channel swimmers . It will be set out as a lounge where you can go to warm up, leave your valuables, have a coffee with other channel swimmers and get advice on channel swimming. You can even get boat crew for your swim if you don't have anybody to feed you. Its located at 3 Waterloo Terrace right behind the channel swimmers beach.
  • Really? Who's running and funding this office...?
  • Just for clarification, the 'office' or 'lounge' is nothing to do with Freda's Dover training. That will continue in the format that it always has.
  • KarenTKarenT Charter Member
    @doversoul - can you tell us a bit more about this new office? Is this a business venture or a free service?
  • The service mentioned above is a professional commercial service given by experienced and qualified individuals and focusing on swimmers needs and perspective at 3Waterloo.Terrace Dover.
  • Nickthefish11Nickthefish11 Charter Member
    Hi Doversoul

    Do you have a website or list of prices and services etc?

    Who are you? Does your first name begin with L and was I on your F-->E ECswim?

  • ZoeSadlerZoeSadler Charter Member
    I'm intrigued to know more about this "professional" service.

    I really hope that this commercial venture is set up to complement Freda’s voluntary efforts and is not set up in competition to what Freda and her team do extremely well. The recent “Service to the Sport” award as voted for by the MSF membership is testament to how much the swimmers love and respect Freda and the Dover Beach Crew. Freda has put in an extraordinary effort over the last 30 years to establish such a vibrant, focused and friendly training group. I would hate to see any of that diluted by a new organisation claiming to be a “focus” in Dover. At the same time, of course we live in a free country!

    There is essentially a captive audience of, sometimes in excess of, 100-150 swimmers at Dover beach every weekend from May who are there as a direct result of Freda’s long-standing volunteering efforts.
  • sharkbaitzasharkbaitza LondonMember
    A little tip... If you are staying the Sat night at the Premier Inn (not an endorsement, just a tip), You can go park there on the Sat Morning through to the Sunday after the last swim... They will give you pass at reception.
  • No we are not in competition with Freda and her beach crew, quite the opposite we respect all that Freda has and is doing but wish to compliment what is already available not duplicate it. If you want to know more then give me a call 07412005430
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