Making a splash with the Brownsea swim

under the waves

The Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) Poole Lifeguard Club, offers people the opportunity to get involved in one of the most exciting events in Poole Harbour, the Brownsea swim. This year the swimmers are directly supporting the island, helping us look after this special place and a unique underwater project.

The swim

On Sept 15, over 300 swimmers will brave the open waters around Brownsea, all hoping to make it round the largest island in Poole harbour.  Not only is this a brillaint opportunity to get active in the outdoors, the Brownsea swim, which is an annual event run by the RLSS Poole Lifeguard, provides a unique opportunity to raise money for excellent causes. 

On your marks, get set, go!
Swimming around Brownsea
On your marks, get set, go!

Our cause 

As a charity, the National Trust looks after more than 780 miles of coastline as well as countryside, heritage sites and nature reserves. We're Britain’s largest coastal landowner and Europe’s largest conservation organisation. The management and conservation of our coastal land costs approximately £3,000 per mile, per year, which is particularly pertinent to Brownsea Island, as a coastal property. 

Brownsea Island has a number of special designations which underpins the importance of our efforts to conserve and protect it; spanning from UK designations like SSSI (Site of Special Scientific Interest), which is predominantly for its wetland and coastal birdlife as well as red squirrels; to international designations like the Poole Harbour Ramsar wetland.

An opportunity to raise money for Brownsea

It is not only part of our strategy to look after this environment, but to also inspire our visitors and help enhance their understanding of the island and the coastal environment that encircles it.  We aim to offer extraordinary experiences in the outdoors so people of all ages can get up close to nature and wildlife and come to value it, and know by supporting us, they can help look after it too. 

One project we are raising money for this year is to replace an old underwater camera system.  We hope to offer a window into a world unseen by most, unlocking its meaning for more people. The purchase of new filming equipment would mean we can share high resolution imagery and live stream content to the website and across the island including the cafe, visitor centre and education room. This film shows a brief insight into just how prolific the sea life is just off our jetties and hopefully demonstrates the potential of an upgraded system.

We feel that the installation of a better underwater camera system will considerably enhance the visitor experience and enable more people to understand and appreciate this delicate ecosystem.

We'd like to thank all the swimmers who will help support us and good luck!

Reducing our waste

The RLSS Poole Lifeguard is also supporting the National Trust's strategy on reducing single use plastics at the Brownsea swim.  Recognising its damaging effect on nature and the environment, the Trust is planning to phase out the use of them at our places over the coming years.  To find out more about the Trust's strategy click here.

Get involved

If your not a swimmer you can still come and see all the action for yourself. There are plenty of great places to see the swim from the viewpoints and beaches. Cheer them on their way and join them after for a well earned cuppa in the Villano Cafe.