Swimming in the outdoors - lakes and lidos, rivers and oceans, especially the people that swim in them.
Music - 'Noe Noe', ' Vienna Beat' and 'Watercool Quiet', by Blue Dot Sessions.
Paul Atherton, Outdoor Swimming and Creativity
Paul Atherton is a filmmaker and Londoner. He produced and directed The Ballet of Change, four short films that were projected onto London landmarks, most famously Piccadilly Circus in 2007. His video-diary Our London Lives is in the permanent collection of the Museum of London. He took up outdoor swimming at the Serpentine Swimming Club, London, in the Summer of 2023, barely being able to swim 50 meters. Just a couple of months later, he completed a mile and a meter in the race by that name, at that club. In this podcast, over breakfast at the Serpentine Lido Café, we discuss swimming, building achievements from a modest baseline, and how swimming allows the mental space for creativity.
Karen Throsby, and a Sociology of Marathon Swimming
Karen Throsby is a swimmer and a sociologist. She is passionate about marathon swimming, and her CV of international distance swims is truly outstanding, taking in the Catalina Channel and Twenty Bridges Swim around Manhatten, as well as the English Channel. In 2008, as she started training for her English Channel solo swim, she took this as a unique opportunity to bring together her combined research and
swimming interests. She wrote a very scholarly book called ‘Immersion: Marathon Swimming, Embodiment and Identity’, which takes the lid off
of the identity and body-shaping process of becoming a marathon swimmer. In this podcast, we talk about what it takes to make a marathon swimmer, through the lens of her own Channel swimming experience.
Social Exclusion and Swimming, with Georgie Milner
Access is an important issue everywhere. People of all creeds and backgrounds swim. Georgie Milner is a life-long swimmer and is very keen to improve the inclusivity of sport settings. She graduated in Human Sciences from the University of Oxford in 2022, where she completed her dissertation on the intersection of swimming and social exclusion, alongside working on the Oxford University Sports Council as Inclusion and Access Officer. As well as water and inclusion for swimming as sport, she is passionate about refugee rights and water safety. In this podcast, recorded in August 2022, we talk about Georgie’s passion for swimming in both the pool and in open water, about inclusion, about her dissertation, and much more.
Francesca Forno, Trento University, talks about 'From grassroots to platform: The reconfiguration of alternative food provisioning in the online world'
Francesca Forno, of Trento University, Italy, gives a presentation entitled 'From grassroots to platform: The reconfiguration of alternative food provisioning in the online world'
Poop Pollution Politics by Stanley Ulijaszek
The gorgeous rivers of England are sick, and I am sick too. Of the politics, of the discharges into the rivers. Of the effluent, both real and that spoken by the
politicians currently in charge of this usually green and pleasant land. A land also full of streams and rivers, veins and arteries of blue space, often blue
but also often coloured by raw sewage. The personal is political, and that goes for swimming waters every bit as much as human rights. This podcast is in response to a front page headline in the Guardian newspaper - ‘Tories turning rivers into open sewers’ - Sir Kier Starmer, leader of the opposition Labour Party, bringing poop pollution further into UK national politics.
The Serpentine Swimming Club, London, and the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame
In May 2022, the Serpentine Swimming Club was inducted into the International Marathon Swimmers Hall of Fame (IMSHOF), in Naples, Italy. One Saturday morning following this proud moment, many of the club’s marathon swimmers came together to be photographed by Anthony Wood, a fellow Serpentine Club Swimmer who’s been photographing life at the club for the past few years, as documented in his Instagram feed @coldwatermornings. This podcast catches the exuberance of the morning’s celebration with many of the clubs’ marathon swimmers as they assembled by the Serpentine Lake in Hyde Park, London, with interviews with some of the many, including multiple solo English Channel swimmer Nick Adams, John Coningham-Rolls, Neil Drinkwater, Robert Fischer, Tom Elliott, Gerald Power-athome, Club President Rob Ouldcott, Judith Charman, Mark Johanssen, James Lythe, James Norton, and the legendary Rosemary George. Marathon swimming defined here as 10 kilometers or more, takes, time, persistence, determination and of course - support. James Norton mentions three that supported him; Volker Koch, Alan Mitchell and Kevin Blick, all marathon swimmers themselves giving up their time to play a modest role in another marathon swimmer’s challenge. ‘Teamwork makes the dream work’ – trite but true.