Wales

Ross O'Sullivan completes 220-mile River Severn swim

Ross O'Sullivan swimming Image copyright Ross O'Sullivan

A man has spoken of his "great sense of achievement" after swimming Britain's longest river in 18 days.

Ross O'Sullivan, 25, from Cardiff, started the 220-mile (354km) swim of the River Severn at the source near Llanidloes, Powys, on 1 June.

On Saturday, he completed the challenge after reaching the Severn Beach at about 14:00 BST.

"I was completely drained. But it was a great sense of achievement," he said.

He was forced to walk the first three days as the water was too shallow, but after reaching Pool Quay, where he met his fiancee Caitriona Hurley and the support team, Mr O'Sullivan said "the adventure really started".

"It was a lot more mentally tough than I expected. I had prepared myself physically for the swim but didn't think we would hit as many obstacles as we did," the civil engineer explained.

"We nearly packed it in half way through but looking back now on the tough patches, it was worth it.

"As soon as I reached the finish my first thoughts were, 'get me a warm bath and a soft mattress under my back'."

Image copyright Google | Ross O'Sullivan
Image caption Mr O'Sullivan completed the challenge a day earlier than expected
Image copyright Ross O'Sullivan

He was also supported by Kevin Brady, 32, who took a month to complete the same challenge last year.

"I was pleased with how I went down the river so fast," Mr O'Sullivan said.

"Kev has been incredibly helpful and really got me through the whole thing."

So far, he has raised £1,600 for motor neurone disease sufferers in memory of his uncle Jimmy, who died from the disease.

Mr O'Sullivan said he hoped he had helped promote "wild swimming" and inspired others to "take up a challenge".

Image copyright Ross O'Sullivan
Image caption Kevin Brady supported Mr O'Sullivan during his swim

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