OSS Adventure Series: Cave Swim, North Devon
OSS Adventure Series: Cave Swim, North Devon
Sat 13th Sep 2014  More >
OSS Adventure Series: the Slingshot, Bristol Channel
OSS Adventure Series: the Slingshot, Bristol Channel
Sat 13th Sep 2014  More >
Dart10k 2014
Dart10k 2014
Sun 14th Sep 2014  More >
OSS Adventure Series: Island Circumnavigation, Isle of Skye
OSS Adventure Series: Island Circumnavigation, Isle of Skye
Sun 21st Sep 2014  More >
Full Moon & Solstice Swims 2014
Full Moon & Solstice Swims 2014
Wed 8th Oct 2014  More >
Events Calendar 2014: UK & Ireland
Events Calendar 2014: UK & Ireland
Sat 6th Dec 2014  More >
Bosphorus essentials: what to wear on an intercontinental race
Bosphorus essentials: what to wear on an intercontinental race
Dolphin watching in the heart of a major city, catching the ferry to Asia for fish and raki, walking from a medieval castle to Albanian wooden mansions and Ottoman palaces are some Istanbul delights on the Bosphorus’ shores. While the Bosphorus strai...  More >
Swimmer stars in Elbow's Real Life (Angel) video
Swimmer stars in Elbow's Real Life (Angel) video
Vivienne Rickman Poole is an obsessive cold water swimmer, artist and photographer who has been contributing her images to the Outdoor Swimming Society newsletters for a while. Generally found quietly swimming her way through the llyns of Snowdonia (on ong...  More >
Let's All Go Down The Strand (Lido)!
Let's All Go Down The Strand (Lido)!
Catch a DFL train to the coast (the 'Down From London' crowds, as seaside locals call them), and you could be forgiven for burying your nose in your freesheets as you pass through the Medway Towns. But you would be missing a secret swimming trick. For at ...  More >
Wild swimming and creativity: Dip Shropshire
Wild swimming and creativity: Dip Shropshire
A month or so ago Lynne Roper reviewed Dip: Wild Swims from the Borderlands by Andrew Fusek Peters for the OSS. The book chronicles Andrew's recovery from severe depression through a year of dips in the Shropshire/Welsh borderlands...  More >
Swimming holidays - the good, the bad, & the quirky
Swimming holidays - the good, the bad, & the quirky
by Jonathan Knott Buying Kate Rew's Wild Swim five years ago may have been the best £13 I ever spent. I had recently started working in an office job in London, and restarted swimming regularly for the first time since I was a child. I doubt that th...  More >
Blooming Jellyfish
Blooming Jellyfish
This summer’s heat has brought swarms of jellyfish and alarmist news headlines about them to UK shores and newspapers. In online swimming forums photos of stings from jellyfish encounters are appearing. Susanne Masters OSS kit reviewer, also an Ethno...  More >
The Swimming Granny
The Swimming Granny
Film review, by Anna Morell A life spent on small islands is a life spent with water. Minutes measured in drips and drops. Hours measured in strokes and splashes. Days lost in waves and wonder. Maria has swum every day for the past 48 of her 90 years in t...  More >
Best Swimming Blogs
Best Swimming Blogs
Swimming blogs are proliferating, and the range of watery blogs out there is a true reflection of the diversity of types of outdoor swimmers. Bloggers swim in all kinds of places: there are founts of knowledge and experience on cold water endurance swimmin...  More >
OSS and Anglian Water Open Rutland Water Inland Bathing Beach
OSS and Anglian Water Open Rutland Water Inland Bathing Beach
Anglian Water Authority has just become the first water authority in England and Wales to open up a family friendly swimming area in a reservoir. Lynne Roper reports Rob Aspey, OSS Inland Access Officer, first approached Anglian Water in January 2010 with...  More >
Water deaths in the media: countering misinformation & hysteria
Water deaths in the media: countering misinformation & hysteria
 A few months ago Lynne Roper - paramedic, swimmer and blogger - stepped in as acting OSS Press Officer. Here she tells the story of some of the hysteria and misinformation that she has encountered during her first few weeks, and messages that she thi...  More >
Kit review: Underwater photography
Kit review: Underwater photography
Want to take photos while swimming? Smartphones, compact cameras, Single Lens Reflexes (SLRs), and GoPros can all be accommodated within waterproof housing. Susanne Masters weighs up the options. "To me, a waterproof compact camera is still the best option...  More >
My children grew up swimming in the wild lakes of Sweden
My children grew up swimming in the wild lakes of Sweden
The idea of wild swimming seems a bit odd in the Swedish context. Everyone goes wild swimming. That is more or less what swimming is. Jane Greene Pettersson reflects on bringing her own children up in this culture My children grew up swimming in the wild ...  More >
Mapping the River Trent
Mapping the River Trent
The River Trent is one of the longest rivers in England, and this summer a group of swimmers, led by pioneers Sarah Lewis and Chris Ensor, are reaching the final stages of an 185 mile journey from source to sea. Here Jane Greene Pettersson talks to Sarah a...  More >
Swimming with seals in the Outer Hebrides
Swimming with seals in the Outer Hebrides
Experienced swimmer, hill walker and eco-writer Ann Palmer has been swimming with seals since she moved to the Isle of Lewis in the Outer Hebrides 12 years ago. She is a lone 69 year old swimmer who swims year-round at the same beach. Here she tells the st...  More >
Book review: Dip: Wild Swims from the Borderlands
Book review: Dip: Wild Swims from the Borderlands
Lynne Roper reviews Dip: Wild Swims from the Borderlands by Andrew Fusek Peters This dream of a book communes with my wild swimmer's soul. Andrew Fusek Peters is a writer and long-time wild swimmer. Recently, clinical depression left him hospitalised...  More >
Remembering JJ: the Wildness and Joy of Jonathan Joyce
Remembering JJ: the Wildness and Joy of Jonathan Joyce
One short year ago yesterday, on 15th June 2013, Jonathan 'JJ' Joyce died suddenly. Many people hold him dear in their hearts, and the OSS and wild swimming community especially in Devon and Cornwall owe much to him, not least his creation of the OSS wild...  More >
East London Swimmers
East London Swimmers
The London Fields Lido sits in the corner of one of East London's most popular areas of grassland. Daily at this outdoor pool a cross-section of East London life come together to take part in something that is part hobby, part- activity and part ritual. In...  More >
The Swimmers' Manifesto
The Swimmers' Manifesto
Artist Amy Sharrock talks about her upcoming work, The Swimmers' Manifesto, at Somerset House "Why do we swim? Some of us have a life-long relationship with swimming - this could be a life-changing experience of recovery, and a return to fitness. It might...  More >
The Landreader Project
The Landreader Project
Many words for landscape features are falling into obscurity, some endure only by haunting place-names and old maps. The Landreader Project by photographer and writer Dominick Tyler is seeking to reverse this loss by cataloguing and preserving landscape w...  More >
Book review: River Suite
Book review: River Suite
Book Review: River Suite by Roselle Angwin, with photos by Vikky Minette As a wild swimmer and writer I find endless inspiration in wild places and wild water. Reading the poetic interpretations of others, however, is a wonderful way of gaining a differen...  More >
Be a friend to Penzance's Jubilee Pool
Be a friend to Penzance's Jubilee Pool
The Friends of Penzance's Jubilee Pool desperately need real, practical support if this wonderful local amenity, tourist destination and heritage pool is to survive. As the love of lidos undergoes a bit of a national renaissance, Penzance's lido is curren...  More >
Swimming pools in the River Thames
Swimming pools in the River Thames
Just last week, Time Out magazine published a list of 62 things you'll never hear a Londoner say. Number 46 was "46. It's a scorcher out there - fancy a refreshing dip in the Thames?" But Time Out would be wrong. Studio Octopi is trying to launch a 'Thame...  More >
Liberated & Lost
Liberated & Lost
Welsh swimmer and photographer Vivienne Rickman-Poole has an exhibition opening next month at Bodelwyddan Castle, Near Rhyl. 'Liberated and Lost' documents her swims both inland and along the North Wales coast and this series of portraits explore her abso...  More >
Downstream: a social history of the Thames
Downstream: a social history of the Thames
Londoner CAITLIN DAVIES is a writer, teacher, journalist, and fair-weather swimmer who has just written 'Downstream'. a social history of swimming on the Thames. Here, she talks about her new book. Have you ever swum in the River Thames? My firs...  More >
Book review: Open Water Swimming Manual
Book Review: Open Water Swimming Manual: An Expert's Survival Guide for Triathletes and Open Water Swimmers by Lynne Cox  Lynne Cox has had a long career in extreme open water swimming. She broke the English Channel record, for men or women, aged jus...  More >
Book review: Dr Rip's Essential Beach Book
Book review: Dr Rip's Essential Beach Book
The rip current is the bogeyman of the sea. Most people don't understand rips or what to do when they're in one. Dr Rip's Essential Beach Book: Everything You Need To Know About Surf, Sand and Rips by coastal geomorphologist Dr Rob Brander (named 'Dr Rip' ...  More >
Lido lessons from Iceland
Lido lessons from Iceland
Iceland has more lidos than England - despite being sparsely populated. On a weekend away, historian and swimmer Chris Ayriss meets shower police and swimmers as he looks for the keys to their popularity Iceland is one of the most sparsely populated coun...  More >
Britain's outdoor swimmers: who they are, what they do
Britain's outdoor swimmers: who they are, what they do
Over 1000 people filled in the 2013 OSS survey last year, giving a picture of British outdoor swimmers now: who they are, what they do, and what they want from the Outdoor Swimming Society. To all those who replied, thank you for your time, ideas, thanks&...  More >
Viv Rickman: lakes. 30 days of swimming.
Viv Rickman: lakes. 30 days of swimming.
Last year, Viv Rickman resolved to swim every day for 30 days. In 2014 she plans to start swimming every Llyn in Snowdonia. Here is her story.   To reach Llyn Padarn, a glacial lake in Snowdonia, Viv Rickman slips through her garden gate and pic...  More >
Olga Way: urban pond. Swimming through winter.
Olga Way: urban pond. Swimming through winter.
In 2013, Olga Way swam through winter. Here is her story. For those of you who've never visited the women's pond on Hampstead Heath in north London - and at the very least, that will be half of you - it's hard to describe the magical nature of the place. ...  More >
Sarah Tunnicliffe: sea. Swimming the channel.
Sarah Tunnicliffe: sea. Swimming the channel.
In 2013, Sarah Tunnicliffe swum the channel. She tells her story to Hannah Booth. A couple of years ago, Sarah Tunnicliffe was an enthusiastic sea-dipper, but far from the Channel-crossing outdoor swimmer she is today. "I've always swum in the sea - my fa...  More >
Eyes As Big As Plates
Eyes As Big As Plates
A return to the earth, a blend of figure and ground, the personification of nature: the solitary figures in the Eyes as Big As Plates series made me feel like a card lost from it's pack. A collaboration between Riitta Iknonen (Finland) and Karoline Hjorth...  More >
What happens to your body in cold water?
What happens to your body in cold water?
Medic Mark Harper answers OSS members questions on swimming in cold water.  If you have a question for him, send him an email. Q: What happens to the body when it's immersed in cold water? Mark Harper: if you do not regularly delight in the joy...  More >
Prescription Goggles: Aquasphere
Prescription Goggles: Aquasphere
If you require optical assistance wearing contact lenses under goggles is a risky way of being able to see while swimming. On outdoor swims there is a lot more to see than in swimming pools; perhaps a pool swim is better when not seeing grimy plasters ...  More >
Welsh access - we need YOUR help
Welsh access - we need YOUR help
As a swimmer and proponent of greater access to inland water in Wales last week I attended a meeting about the forthcoming green paper from Welsh Government about broadening access to the countryside - specifically including water.  There are a few t...  More >
Cold swimmers: space blanket, wool blanket - or plastic bag?
Cold swimmers: space blanket, wool blanket - or plastic bag?
In the first of what we hope we will be a long and informative relationship, medic Mark Harper answers questions from open water swimmers about cold water and how their bodies react and adapt to it.  If you have a question, email it to Mark, and you...  More >
Watermarked: be part of the story
Watermarked: be part of the story
WATERMARKED: BE PART OF THE STORY Artists Becca Thomas and Clare Charles won the OSS Creative Grant process last month for their project proposal Watermarked. Watermarked is a sound art project which will archive the personal stories of those for whom swi...  More >
A 4,700 mile Journey Across the USA for a Healthier Happier World
A 4,700 mile Journey Across the USA for a Healthier Happier World
American Rob Greenfield recently cycled 4,700 miles across the USA to spread the message we should use less water. Here he tells his story... Water.  You love it right?  You especially love swimming in it, in the outdoors?  You and me ...  More >
Aquabuddhism: How Swimming Can Quieten The Unruly Mind
Aquabuddhism: How Swimming Can Quieten The Unruly Mind
Words; Patrick Taggart There are many reasons to love wild swimming - the sense of adventure; the joy  of immersing yourself in beautiful watery places; the thrill of getting up close and  personal with nature; the satisfaction of achieving goal...  More >
In memory of Jonathan Joyce: more good days?
In memory of Jonathan Joyce: more good days?
There is much sadness in our hearts, as a result of the loss of an amazing man and swimmer,  Jonathan Joyce (pictured), who left the world far too soon, while swimming in Devon earlier on 15 June 2013.  JJ was a maverick, a free spirit...  More >

OSS Newsletter
Sign up to receive OSS news and updates about national and regional events.

OSS ADVENTURE SERIES: We're delighted to launch the OSS Adventure Series, a small series of swims offered to OSS swimmers by OSS swimmers. They're free, they're wild - and they promise to take you places (mental, physical or geographical) that you may never have been before. Register for the swims by 24th August, and the places will be awarded by ballot by the 25th August. Good luck!

WILDSWIM.COM Find a swim! Anywhere, anytime... whatever you're looking for, river, tarn, lake or sea, check out wildswim.com to find swims worldwide. From river crossings with crocodiles in Vietnam to waterfalls in Cumbria, wildswim.com is THE place to find great swim locations. You can now also use it to advertise your swim event (club meet, social swim or commercial event for free). Just log in via facebook, add a swim spot, and choose the correct swim category and it will show up on the list of 'Upcoming Swims' and be viewed by thousands of swimmers a day. 

JOIN US! The OSS is the world's biggest collective of wild swimmers. Join us for information and inspiration about wild swimming, river swimming, lake swimming, sea swimming, open water and lidos.

LET'S GO SWIMMING!

  1. Sign up to the OSS newsletter, for free news of every aspect of open water: events, safety, training, art, literature and ecology. Every membership is a vote for greater inland access and more freedom for swimmers.
  2. Join the movement on OSS Facebook to take part in free social swims and talk to the collective.  
  3. See our wild swim map for the best wild swimming, river swimming and lake swimming in the country. 
  4. Buy the book: Wild Swim, by Kate Rew, OSS Founder and 'the force behind Britain's wild swimming movement', is the definitive inspirational guide to wild swimming in the UK with over 300 great wild swims.  
  5. Have fun!

INLAND ACCESS: The OSS is fighting for your right to swim and has an OSS Inland Access Sub Group with regional representatives around the country. To contact them see the team page. See video footage of the OSS giving evidence  at the Welsh Assembly. 

GET INSPIRED: Planning some wild swimming trips in 2013? See films of Kate Rew wild swimming in the Fairy Pools, Thames, Yorkshire, Wordsworth country and around Burgh Island. Also, catch the OSS December Dip on Youtube (2009 and 2008) and our first Breastrokes charity swim (2006).

 



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