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National 1000 year swim comes to aston

6 August 2008 – for immediate release

An architectural historian will take on the Birmingham leg of a challenge with a difference this week as he continues his attempt to visit each of England’s listed Victorian and Edwardian public pools and swim a lap for every year the buildings have been standing.

In a bid to highlight the importance of historic public swimming pools, Dr Ian Dungavell, Director of national heritage charity the Victorian Society, will continue his epic task, which will see him swimming a distance of 22 miles, on Thursday 7 August with 104 lengths at Aston University’s Grade II-listed Woodcock Centre before swimming 100 lengths at Moseley Road Baths, Balsall Heath on Friday 8 August.

Dr Dungavell said: ‘I'm delighted to have the opportunity to swim at the Woodcock Centre. I was amazed to discover that so many of the original features survive at this pool. Working heritage assets like this contribute so much to communities as symbols of shared past and civic pride. Aston University should be congratulated for keeping this nationally significant piece of living history in use.'

From Birmingham, Dr Dungavell will go on to visit the five remaining pools on his list, rounding his challenge off with 116 laps at Dulwich Leisure Centre on Friday 29 August.

Swimming a total of 1543 laps at fourteen pools over the summer, he will cover a distance more than equivalent to crossing the Dover Strait of the English Channel.

Ian Dungavell will be at the Woodcock Centre from 5.15pm on Thursday 7 August. For more information about the 1000 Year Swim, please visit http://www.1000yearswim.com

ENDS

For further press information from Aston University please contact Sally Finn on 0121 204 4552 or email s.l.finn1@aston.ac.uk

You can also contact Dr Ian Dungavell directly at direct line 020 8747 5890/ mobile 07906 573 351

Press contact at the Victorian Society:

Ann Morgan, Community Engagement Officer -community@victoriansociety.org.uk. Direct line 020 8747 5897/ 07973 842 113.

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