Fulham Property Developer takes on Channel Swim for national Children’s Charity
Driven by a passion to challenge herself, a London Property Developer will attempt to complete one of the most gruelling feats of human endeavour when she swims the English Channel in aid of the Children’s Air Ambulance (TCAA).
A keen triathlete, and having recently completed a Half Ironman, Suzanne Mason (38) is no stranger to challenging herself both mentally and physically, and her next venture is to take on an epic swim as one of six swimmers who make up the Tidal Force Team.
The team will gather on the Dover shores this week and will be called upon anytime between 10-14 June, joining a further two teams, in the charity challenge to navigate the 22.5-mile stretch as a relay – in an effort to raise vital funds for the lifesaving service.
“I like to challenge myself and I love being in the water, so this Channel Swim event seemed like the ultimate challenge,” says Suzanne.
Despite only signing up to the Children’s Air Ambulance event in April, Suzanne has been training almost every day in lakes and pools, working on technique, acclimatisation, and endurance – and has now passed her assessment swim, where she spent 2.5 hours swimming in the cold.
“I’ve been working hard, pushing myself and giving each training session 100%. It takes a completely different form of fitness and techniques to what I’m used to,” says Suzanne.
“It takes a lot of physical and mental strength and perseverance to have come this far in such a short amount of time, but it is for such a great charity – the Children’s Air Ambulance – and that keeps me going,” she adds.
The Children’s Air Ambulance – operated by The Air Ambulance Service – is a national service that is changing the face of paediatric and neonatal care through the high-speed transfer of critically ill babies and children – flying them from one hospital to another for specialist care.
Two clinically designed AgustaWestland 169 helicopters provide flying intensive care units and work with 10 NHS paediatric retrieval teams across the UK. If a child is too sick to fly, then the Children’s Air Ambulance can fly a specialist team directly to them.
Although a tough challenge, Suzanne has really taken to open water swimming and the comradery that it brings.
“The cold water has become addictive now, and it really helps with mental health and having a focus other than work. The open water swimming community is brilliant and taking on this challenge with the Tidal Force Team has really helped as we spur one another on and have such a great dynamic,” says Suzanne.
Suzanne – both excited and nervous- will become part of a worldwide “family” of people who have conquered the famed stretch of water, home to the world’s busiest shipping lanes, but more than that she will help to keep families together through supporting the critical work of the national charity.
“Despite the unpredictable elements we are set to face, the team can do this challenge, we have trained hard and will feel accomplished when we reach the other side,” she adds.
On behalf of TCAA Special Events team, Kristina Johnson says: “We are delighted to have Suzanne on the Tidal Force Team, taking part in our incredible challenge.
“We’d like to thank her for all her dedication training and fundraising– despite the difficulties faced in the current climate. Suzanne’s support of the charity is truly inspirational, and we look forward to seeing her in the water, cheering her and the rest of the team on.”
To support Suzanne and the Tidal Force Team on their challenge, please click here.