Sean Conway becomes first person to swim from Land’s End to John O’Groats

He had to battle bad weather and jelly fish stings to make the marathon journey

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The Independent Online

A man has become the first person to swim the length of Britain from Land’s End to John O’Groats.

Sean Conway, 32, from Gloucestershire set off from the tip of Cornwall on 30 June, reaching the most northern point of mainland Scotland on Monday - 135 days later.

Mr Conway covered 900 miles, making an estimated three million strokes for the feat. He swam for 90 of the days, whilst the remaining time was spent out of the water due to bad weather.

He had originally hoped to reach John O’Groats in just two months rather than the four it took. Many people have walked and cycled between the two points, but no one has swam the distance before.

Emerging from the water, he told the BBC: "It just shows that if you put your mind to something anything is possible.

"The hardest part was trying to deal with the weather, the cold and jelly fish in the face. I had to grow this ridiculous beard to stop the stings."

During the swim he was stung 10 times. As the temperature has dropped, his jaw became so cold in the closing weeks of the swim that he could not chew solid foods.

He also had eating fatigue from the amount of calories he needed to consume and lost a stone in weight.

"This is the hardest thing I have ever done. That said, I'm really glad I have done it,” he told STV.  “I don't think anyone will try it ever again, if they know the reality of it. If someone wants to, I will definitely help them, but it will be cold."

Mr Conway has so far raised over £6,000 from the swim with proceeds going to War Child, a charity that provides aid to children living in war zones.