Charity swim is Diane’s finale

Diane Williams with colleagues at Tesco who sponsored her, and members of Graham Stimson's family, from left, Diane Barwick, Graham's daughter Claire Turner, Graham's wife Linda, Jane Jordan-Roberts and Hannah Templeman
Diane Williams with colleagues at Tesco who sponsored her, and members of Graham Stimson's family, from left, Diane Barwick, Graham's daughter Claire Turner, Graham's wife Linda, Jane Jordan-Roberts and Hannah Templeman

An inspirational woman has completed her last ever fundraising swim for charity after more than 42 years in the pool.

Diane Williams, 56, of Black Prince Avenue, Market Deeping, has been taking on charity swims since the age of 14, raising tens of thousands of pounds for worthy causes.

She has now decided to hang up her swimming costume for good after completing a 66-length swim in front of family and friends at Deepings Leisure Centre on Sunday, February 3.

Her efforts raised £1,500 for Cancer Research UK in memory of a friend’s father Graham Stimson, who died from cancer last year, aged 57.

Diane said: “I used to swim for the county when I was at school and I had dreams of becoming an Olympic swimmer but I wasn’t quite good enough so I decided to do swims for charity.

“I just thought if you have a talent, why not put it to good use and that’s what I decided to do. Just being able to swim and help others has been so rewarding.

“It was quite emotional doing my last swim. It was in front of Graham’s family. He was a true gentlemen and is sorely missed.”

Diane said she would not have been able to conquer her more recent swims without the support of her colleagues at Tesco in Godsey Lane, Market Deeping. She has also thanked Paul Linford, of Linford’s Fish and Chips, who has sponsored many of her swims, as well as family and friends.

Diane added: “Without my colleagues I couldn’t have done so many swims. They have all been amazing in giving me the best support over the years. They’ve been remarkable.

“I still want to carry on with my fundraising with car boot sales and fetes. It’s what I love doing.”

You can still sponsor Diane for her recent swim by visiting www.justgiving.com/dianewilliams1957