Wildlife and Nature


With worries about climate change, obesity and urban youth crime, we need, more than ever, new and exciting ways for our children to engage with the natural world and to explore it in safe and responsible ways. Swimming is the favourite sporting activity for girls and is second only to football for boys. Perhaps opening up our rivers, lakes and waterfalls again can provide new opportunities to satisfy an appetite for adventure while attaching new meaning to the environment and the wild.

‘I can go right up to a frog in the water and it will show more curiosity than fear. The damselflies and dragonflies that crowd the surface of the moat pointedly ignore me, just taking off for a moment to allow me to go by them, then landing again on my wake. In the water you are hidden and submerged, enveloped in the silkiness of a liquid that is the medium of all life on earth.’

The late Roger Deakin, author of Waterlog, naturalist and forefather of wild-swimming, describing swimming in his moat in Suffolk.