Cumbria

Club holds Windermere swim despite toxic algae warning

A national clu held its annual swim in Windermere despite warnings over potentially dangerous algae.

The Great North Swim at the lake this weekend was cancelled on Friday because of the blue-green algae.

However, another swim organised by the British Long Distance Swimming Association (BLDSA), went ahead on Saturday.

The BLDSA said its 10.5 mile (16.1km) route avoided the area where the algae was growing.

The event has been running for 50 years.

A statement on the BLDSA website to its members said: "The BLDSA swim does not go in to Low Wood bay where the blue green algae is, so we have been given the go ahead for our swim."

The Environment Agency warned that the algae can cause sickness and rashes.

Nearly 9,000 people had signed up for the charity Great North Swim event and organisers, Nova International, hope to reschedule it for later this year.

Jason Dearden, the managing director of Windermere Marina, was due to take part in the swim.

He said: "My wife and children, aged two and three, have been swimming in the lake all summer with no ill effect.

"It is very unfortunate that organisers have had to take a hard line on safety - but there were a lot of people coming to the area and we don't want there to be any negativity."

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