Killer Whales Swim the Channel for EFDS

At the end of August, The Killer Whales Channel Swim Team will be stepping into the English Channel in Dover, ready for the challenge of their lives. They will be negotiating freezing temperatures and rough waves as they attempt to swim the 23 miles to France. They are undertaking this incredible challenge in aid of their two chosen charities, the English Federation of Disability Sport and Cancer Research UK.

At 10.41am on Wednesday 25 August 1875 Captain Matthew Webb stepped out of the cold waters of the English Channel onto French soil having set off from Dover almost 22 hours earlier. The first man to successfully swim the channel returned home a hero and received world wide acclaim for his success. It is 138 years since Webb achieved his goal, but this unique and demanding swim is still considered by many to be the ultimate long distance challenge. 

The Killer Whales Channel Swim team will be met with unpredictable tides, up to force 6 winds, waves in excess of two meters and freezing cold water. They will also have to contend with the 500-600 container ships which pass through the Dover Straight each day.

This challenge would be intimidating for many experienced open water swimmers but what makes this team all the more incredible is that they range in age from just fourteen to eighteen years. The 7 talented young swimmers have all swum at county and regional level but this is the first time they have undertaken a swim of this distance and magnitude. 

Kieran Goodwin (15), said,

‘The training has proved to be very hard, juggling open water and pool swimming. Acclimatization is a big part of our training now. Every Saturday we get up at 6am to jump in a freezing cold lake and swim laps. It’s really tough but it lessens the chance of hypothermia when we get in the channel’.


The team has now completed their mandatory two hour swim in Dover Harbour and have been given official permission for the challenge. They have been given a time slot of 27 August to 1 September and are now ready to emulate Captain Webb and undertake their incredible journey.

If you would like to find out more about the boys and their challenge, please take a look at their website.

To make a donation to their fantastic cause please donate via their online fundraising page.

The Killer Whales are raising money for Disability Sport Events, the events programme of the English Federation of Disability Sport. This is a completely self-funded programme and without the hard work and dedication of people like the boys we would be unable to deliver our range of inclusive events. If you are interested in taking on a challenge or organising an event to raise money for EFDS please see more on our fundraising pages or get in touch with our events team.