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The 2018 Great North Swim is now open!

Join us in our new home at Brockhole on Windermere for a fantastic weekend of open water swimming in the stunning Lake District.

With distances to suit all levels and abilities you can enjoy a weekend in the great outdoors with friends and family.

Take your pick from 250 metres, 1/2 a mile, 1 mile, 2 miles, 5k or a 10k...


If you'd like to check the 2018 timetable, just click here >


Event location

Bigger. Better. Brockhole!

After ten successful years at Low Wood Bay we’re very excited to announce that the Great North Swim will be moving to a new home in 2018.

Over the last decade the event has grown from just 3,000 swimmers to almost 10,000 and our new location at Brockhole on Windermere will allow us to continue to improve the Great Swim experience for participants and spectators alike. As well as an improved swim village full of retailers, partners and sponsors you can look forward to:

  • Family activities on site
  • Tasty treats from local food producers
  • Craft Beer Tent for post swim celebrations
  • Acoustic music and entertainment

Brockhole on Windermere is a not-for-profit attraction run by the Lake District National Park Authority and will also offer improved access and increased parking capacity.

Stay tuned for a full programme over the coming months.


Windermere is England's largest lake at 10.5 miles long (17km), stretching from Ambleside in the North to Newby Bridge in the South.

Surrounded by some of the nation’s most spectacular natural scenery - the Lake District National Park - the Great North Swim is an inspiring outdoor swim. With large screens around the event site, family and friends can watch all the action.

Make a weekend of it in the Lakes

Why not turn your trip into a great weekend away. Take time to explore the land that has inspired world-renowned poets and writers such as Wordsworth and Beatrix Potter. The breathtaking scenery of the Lake District acts as a natural adventure playground - as well as Windermere being England's longest lake, it also boasts England's highest mountain (Scafell Pike), deepest lake (Wastwater) and steepest road (Hardknott Pass). Where else could you find such a variety of world-class outdoor activities in such an accessible and compact region?

Top 5 Attractions in the Lake District National Park:

  1. Mountain Biking-The Loughrigg fell tour - The Lake District is one of the most exciting places in the world to come mountain biking. If you want to challenge yourself on England's highest peaks, to enjoy an epic day out over endless miles of stunning countryside, or to journey for several days, barely touching tarmac, this is the place to visit.The fells just west of Ambleside are gentler than the higher fells and offer a good introduction to those new to the Lake District. The Loughrigg Fell circular mountain bike tour takes in the pretty mix of lakes, woodland fells and lanes that surround the base of Loughrigg Fell.
  2. Rydal Mount and Gardens- Rydal, Ambleside, Cumbria - Rydal Mount, Wordsworth's best loved home for 37 years. Here he wrote many of his poems and revised and improved much of his earlier works including the Prelude and the famous 'Daffodils' poem. This historic home offers, large beautiful terraced gardens landscaped by the poet, magnificent views of lake Windermere and Rydal Water.
  3. Derwent Water Marina - Keswick, Cumbria - This busy marina on Derwentwater offers watersports tuition, boat hire, sailing, kayaking and canoeing.
  4. The World of Beatrix Potter - Bowness-on-Windermere Windermere, Cumbria - A magical indoor attraction that brings to life all 23 Beatrix Potter's Peter Rabbit tales. Meet all your favourite characters and find out more about Beatrix Potter herself.
  5. Townend -Troutbeck, Windermere, Cumbria - A real Lakeland hidden treasure set in the beautiful village of Troutbeck, this 17th century solid stone and slate house sits imposingly on the hillside, its huge chimneys typical of the area.
About Windermere

Tour of Brockhole

If you’d like to find out more about activities taking place at Brockhole on Windermere please click here

Great North Swim250

If you’re keen to try an open water swim, but don’t know where to start, then why not have a go at our brand new Great North Swim250 event?
What is it?
250 metres (the equivalent of 10 lengths of a standard 25 metre pool) of open water swimming/splashing/doggy-paddling in the bay area of Windermere.
Where: The scenic setting of Windermere in the Lake District
Who: Anyone aged 8 years old and over, suitable for all abilities
How much: £15 per entry (individual)
Great North Swim250 is the ideal event for new or nervous swimmers, families, and children aged 8 and over, where you can literally test the water and get a feel for swimming in the great outdoors. 
Please note:

Wetsuits are compulsory and every child aged 12 and under must be accompanied by one adult (per child). Anyone aged 18+ years old is classified as an adult.

Payment information

For children aged 8 - 12 years old the entry payment is £15, which includes the entry of one adult per child. For anyone aged 13 years old and over the entry is £15 per entry.
Places are limited for this fun, family-focussed event so make sure you secure yours today!

8 - 12 year olds sign up here  

13 years old and over sign up here  

Great North Swim250


Advance notice regarding the application of technical rule for the Great North Swim Elite 5km Race, 10 June 2018:

All participants who have entered the Great North Swim please note that the technical rule on optional usage of neoprene wetsuits is currently being reviewed by British Swimming.  An announcement outlining the final decision will be made by prior to the event. 

The Great North Swim will host the qualifying race for the 2018 World Open Water Championships & European Junior Open Water Championships. For specific qualification procedures & requirements please see: British Swimming Selection Policies

Elite female & male races will be held on Sunday 10 June at 3:45pm & 4:45pm respectively. In order to qualify for a complimentary elite entry into the elite races, you must meet the below entry criteria:

1500 m male (current 12 months ranking, Jan 2018) Time
Athletes born 2003 & 2004 (14 & 15 years) 17:36
Athletes born 2001 & 2002 (16 & 17 years) 17:12
Athletes born 1999 & 2000 (18 & 19 years) 16:44
Seniors, athletes born 1998 & older 16:16


800 m female (currents 12 months ranking, Jan 2018) Time
Athletes born 2003 & 2004 (14 & 15 years) 09:35
Athletes born 2001 & 2002 (16 & 17 years) 09:27
Athletes born 1999 & 2000 (18 & 19 years) 09:14
Seniors, athletes born 1998 & older 09:02


400m IM male (currents 12 months ranking, Jan 2018) Time
Athletes born 2003 & 2004 (14 & 15 years) 05:00
Athletes born 2001 & 2002 (16 & 17 years) 04:50
Athletes born 1999 & 2000 (18 & 19 years) 04:42
Seniors, athletes born 1998 & older 04:35


400m IM female (currents 12 months ranking, Jan 2018) Time
Athletes born 2003 & 2004 (14 & 15 years) 05:16
Athletes born 2001 & 2002 (16 & 17 years) 05:13
Athletes born 1999 & 2000 (18 & 19 years) 05:05
Seniors, athletes born 1998 & older 04:56
Entry Criteria

Alternative entry criteria for athletes without a recent 12 months pool event ranking:

Top 20 finish at any FINA OW World Cup within the 2017/2018 season
Top 15 finish at any LEN OW European Cup within the 2017/2018 season

Consideration will only be given to:

> Top 8 at any governing body sanctioned OW swimming international open race within the 2017/2018 season.

> Athletes who were/are invited or took part in the 2017 or 2018 British Swimming National Open Water Training Camp.

Both Elite fields are restricted to numbers so apply early to avoid disappointment.

Email with details of qualifying performances, name, DOB & club.

The Elite Management reserves the right to refuse any entry whether an athlete meets criteria or not. This is a guide & does not guarantee elite entry into any Great Swim Event. Elite entries for all events will close 2 weeks before the event date. No entries will be accepted after this date.

Alternative entry criteria

To view or download the full athlete information document please click here >

Athlete PDF

Swim for Macmillan

Great Swim is proud to have Macmillan on board as the Official Charity for our Great Swim Series. If you're looking for ways to raise money for charity and you'd like to choose to swim for Macmillan all you need to do is click below:


Swim for Macmillan  

Swim for Macmillan