Since it was first completed by Captain Matthew Webb in 1875, there have been 3,951 attempts to swim the English Channel between Dover and Calais. And of those attempts, 1,832 people have completed the swim, a success rate of 46 per cent.
However, endurance swimmer Lewis Pugh is aiming to take the challenge to a whole different level and bring new meaning to the phrase swimming the Channel.
Starting on July 12, he will be swimming the length of it in the latest in a succession of challenges, this one named The Long Swim.
Stretching From West Cornwall to Dover, Pugh will swim roughly 10km each day for 50 days, although in reality he will be finishing as soon as humanly possible.
In accumulating a total of 560km from start to finish Pugh has two aims, one personal and one very much global.
His first is to increase the awareness of marine protected areas.
Before there is a government initiative to develop stringent policies, such as specific marine conservation, we – the British public – need to be made aware of the serious impact pollution and over fishing is having on our environment.