Poisonous algae causes Rutland Water charity swim to be postponed

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A CHARITY swim across a reservoir had to be postponed because of poisonous algae in the water.

Epilepsy Action’s Rutland Water Swim was due to take place on Sunday, with more than 70 swimmers expected to take part.

But athletes competing in the Vitruvian Triathlon, which took place at the reservoir on Friday and Saturday, raised the alarm after seeing large clumps of blue-green algae in the water.

The plant, which occurs naturally in fresh water, can cause illnesses such as dermatitis, gastroenteritis and pneumonia in humans when swallowed.

Anglian Water, which owns Rutland Water, decided to postpone the charity swim until Sunday, September 30.

Marketing and events manager, Tony Entwistle, said: “It’s a great shame we had to postpone Sunday’s event, especially as it was to raise money for such a good cause.

“Nevertheless, safety must come first. The appearance of the algae on Saturday meant there was a very real possibility of blue-green algae in the water on the morning of the swim and we couldn’t take a chance.

“We made the decision to postpone at the earliest opportunity so all the swimmers could be contacted and told not to come.”

The charity swim was organised with the help of sporting experts Inspire2tri.