Brrrrilliant way to raise charity cash
THEY each had their own reasons for wanting to jump into the North Sea.
The one thing the fundraisers in Withernsea and Flamborough had in common was that hundreds of bystanders thought they were mad.
Dozens of people took the plunge in Withernsea, raising funds for whichever charities they wanted.
Among those was Jane Gill, 59, who had a £100 bet with her son Mark Dowse that she could not swim from break water to break water.
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Jane, who suffers rheumatoid arthritis, said: "I didn't think I would do it. It was very hard as it was so cold.
"I was breathless and cried when I completed it."
Jane, who lives in Hibaldstow, Lincolnshire, but has a caravan in Withernsea, raised £280 for the RNLI.
She was cheered on by her husband Vincent and her mother-in-law Joan.
Jane said: "I learnt to swim in the sea and I've also done quite a bit of swimming since I got arthritis three years ago.
"I weighed 15st and started swimming to lose a bit of weight. I've lost 6st since."
Thirty-five people took to the North Sea, braving sea temperatures of just six degrees.
Fred Blackbourne, 64, has taken part in six dips.
He said: "It doesn't get any easier. I think it might even have been colder this year than ever. There was a cold wind.
"But it's a great event and nice to give something back."
Mr Blackbourne, of Withernsea, was raising funds for Canine Partners, a charity that provides assistance dogs to people with disabilities.
He said: "I have to dip my head and shoulders into the sea. The key for me is to get it done as quickly as possible. Get in, do my bit and get out."
The event was organised by the Withernsea Lions.
People taking part could raise funds for whichever charity they wanted and there were also Lion volunteers with buckets collecting money.
Councillor Gordon Hodgson, a town councillor and Lion, helped organise the event.
Although he did not get his feet wet, he was a welcome sight for all the fundraisers making a splash.
He said: "We organised cups of warm drinks and soup back at The Meridian Centre.
"The event was very successful. The bucket collectors remarked on the generosity of the people.
"It takes my breath away that so close after Christmas, people can still find the money to donate to charity – folding money. It definitely exceeded expectations.
"I'd like to thank everyone who took part."
Further up the coast, 30 people dressed in nursery rhyme outfits took a plunge in Flamborough to raise funds for the village pre-school, with 200 supporters watching from the shore.
Now in its fourth year, the Flamborough Longsword Dancers got onboard to support the event, cheering on the dippers before heading back into the village for their annual Boxing Day tradition of performing outside each pub in aid of local charities.
Helen Broadley, the committee chairman at the pre-school and one of the organisers of the event, said: "Our aim was for Boxing Day to be a day that people really looked forward to, full of lots of community activity and traditions – I think we achieved this aim."
It is hoped this year's Flamborough dip will have raised in excess of £1,000.