THE Finswim Expedition started out from Carrickfin Blue Flag beach on the North West Donegal Coast on 17th September 2020.
Anrí Ó Domhnaill (Henry O’Donnell) was aiming to attempt a finswim and circumnavigation of the entire coast of Ireland with support from his expedition team.
He also aimed to raise €100k for two worthy charities, Irish Cancer Society (ICS) and Water Safety Ireland (WSI).
They reached the half way point off the Waterford coast earlier this year raising €43K for the charities but unfortunately the event was seriously disrupted and suspended due to the Covid pandemic.
Anrí continued training and planning amid the uncertainty generated by the Covid situation in the hope that the event could resume.
After a lot of hard work, serious planning by Anrí and effort from the expedition team and support from the local community in Bunmahon, Dungarvan and other Waterford coastal areas, Finswim is back on course in an attempt to complete the south coast and then the west coast northbound along the wild atlantic way towards Donegal.
The expedition vessel and crew from Tory Island provided support and essential safety cover for Anrí from Donegal around the coast to the half way point.
This vessel, Tor Dearg – Tory Fast Ferry and crew is providing passenger and other services for Tory Island and is not available to the expedition at this time.
Anrí described their contribution to the event as professional,dedicated and extraordinary adding that skipper Willie Duggan, Padraig and Brendan along with other team members played a vital role in the success of the event so far.
In order to revive the expedition, it was necessary to change plans and engage with coastal communities for support in terms of safety boat cover,logistics and operational input.
Anrí was in Bunmahon and Dungarvan last week preparing and planning for the revival.
The completed safety drills, tracker testing, communications checks and succeeded in progressing around 17 miles along the Finswim route over a two days and trial session.
It was successful with help from Blackwater ECO Tours, Villierstown , Skipper Eugene Burke , Vincent Mernin and Peter Burke.
Other key members of the expedition are working very hard day and night to help revive the project – they include website designer and manager Oisín McLaughlin, photographer / cameraman Rory O Donnell, Karolina Szpunar sports therapist,Sarah Doherty IT / SM and many others.
Anrí wishes to thank his team and local community in Waterford adding: “They are at the very Heart of the Finswim Expedition Revival and are truely exceptiona people”. We wish to put a shout out for additional support in an attempt to complete the south coast phase.
Type of assistance required from Ballycotton towards Cork harbour entrance and southwestwards along the coast includes boat cover,food , accommodation,financial support to run the expedition and some basic logistics support. Contact can be made through our website www.finswim2020.com .email finswim email@example.com.
The general plan now is to continue with the expedition last week in September along the south coast from Ardmore / Youghal area towards Ballycotton and onwards towards Valentia in the coming months.