Budleigh Salterton and Exmouth get ready for Christmas Day swims

PUBLISHED: 18:30 19 December 2015

Exmouth Christmas Day Swim. Photo by Simon Horn. Ref exe 0724-52-11SH To order your copy of this photograph visit www.exmouthjournal.co.uk and click on myphotos24

Exmouth Christmas Day Swim. Photo by Simon Horn. Ref exe 0724-52-11SH To order your copy of this photograph visit www.exmouthjournal.co.uk and click on myphotos24

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Time to make a splash! Whatever the weather, the annual Christmas Day swims will be in full swing at Budleigh Salterton and Exmouth.

Exmouth Christmas Day Swim. Ref exe 4048-53-14SH. Picture: Simon HornExmouth Christmas Day Swim. Ref exe 4048-53-14SH. Picture: Simon Horn

The Budleigh swim – from the Steamer Steps at 10am - is becoming increasingly popular.

The bigger Exmouth swim has grown from humble beginnings in the late 1960s when local resident Ken Cunningham and friends dived into the sea.

Nearly 50 years later, hundreds now take up the challenge annually, many raising funds for charity.

Spectators gather at the Octagon from 10.30am.

Exmouth Christmas Day Swim. Ref exe 4013-53-14SH. Picture: Simon HornExmouth Christmas Day Swim. Ref exe 4013-53-14SH. Picture: Simon Horn

Competitors come in all shapes and sizes, wearing fancy dress. Anything goes, from Viking outfits to Santas, sailors and snowmen.

At 11am there’s a countdown and the hardy – and extremely foolhardy – charge down the beach and plunge into the freezing waves.

Some bravely strike out into the estuary, round some buoys, and head back to shore.

Some don’t make it that far. Due to sheer numbers of entrants, a splash and dash is the best they can achieve.

We’ll be there to cover all the action at both swims, so if you can’t be there, look out for our photo galleries!

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