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The annual Frances Thornton Memorial Galway Bay Swim in aid of Cancer Care West will now take place throughout the month of August.

Now in its 15th year, the annual swim would normally see 150 people crossing the bay but it has had to be reimagined for the world we live in currently. The swim is one of Ireland's biggest and longest one-day swimming events. Starting from Aughinish in Co. Clare and finishing at Blackrock Diving Tower in Salthill, brave swimmers cover a distance of roughly 13km. So, to ensure Cancer Care West raises the vital funds it needs to continue its services, the charity is calling on you to swim your own 13km in August.

Galway Bay Swim

Since the swim began 14 years ago, 740 people have swam the Bay. “The swim is much more than a fundraiser; it's the swimming highlight for so many swimmers across Ireland. We needed to somehow still come together this year, so we have decided that a 13km registered swim could still bring this swim into people's lives. The swimming community in Ireland is a very tight knit one, we have all felt a little displaced through this pandemic, so coming together through the strokes gives us all a sense of place and purpose again,” explained Brian Thornton, Director of Cancer Care West.

Last year’s swim raised over €100,000 for Cancer Care West. “We have seen a drop of between 50-60% in our fundraising this year. All face to face charity fundraisers have had to stop so we are banking on this swim to try and ensure services for 2020. The monies raised will help fund support services for cancer patients and their families through our support centres ” said Brian.


All year round swimmer Paddy McNamara says "this year it gives a unique opportunity to swimmers of all abilities to do something special for Cancer Care West. This challenge can be completed anywhere in the world so it would be great to see a local and international element to the event"

The Frances Thornton Memorial Galway Bay Swim will take place throughout August. People are invited to swim 13km, which can be broken up throughout the whole month. Swimmers are asked to raise €100 each for Cancer Care West this year and will receive a personalised Frances Thornton Memorial Galway Bay Swim Technical T-shirt. To register for the event please log on to www.cancercarewest.ie or www.galwaybayswim.com