A unique opportunity to swim one mile from Padstow to Rock across the beautiful Camel Estuary and raise money for the
Marie Curie Charity.
The swim offers competent swimmers the unique opportunity to swim the one mile (approx) from Padstow to Rock across the beautiful Camel Estuary under controlled conditions. All entrants must be capable of swimming at least one mile in open water. All juveniles under the age of 16 must be accompanied at all times by an adult.
The Padstow to Rock Swim has been running continuously (except for 2020) since the 1970s. It was started by local enthusiast Sarah Hawkins who decided to raise money for charity by persuading friends and family to swim across the Camel estuary from the harbour wall in Padstow in the early 1970s.
Popularity for the event grew rapidly with numbers rising year on year. Sarah managed the event until 2006. With Health and Safety regulations having an increasing impact on the organisation of the swim, a small group of local people then took on the challenge. The present swim committee now shares the task of administration of the swim to meet all Health and Safety obligations.
The swim was relaunched, with Sarah’s blessing, in 2007, with Marie Curie as the partner charity since 2011.
The Hawkins Cup, donated by Sarah Hawkins, is a trophy awarded annually to the person who is considered by the Committee to have contributed most to the swim in that particular year.
The swim is from the Sea Cadet Slipway in Padstow (near the start of the Camel Trail) to the RNLI Slipway in Rock. Check out the route at the bottom of this page.
The Registration Fee is £35.00 but we hope that all swimmers will make the most of this opportunity to raise as much money in sponsorship as they possibly can for Marie Curie.
In order to take into account the tidal conditions, the swim is organised in two waves of level:
• Elite swimmers who can complete the swim in a maximum of 30 minutes.
• Non-Elite swimmers who can complete the swim in a maximum of 60 minutes
Wet suits are mandatory. Shorties are acceptable, but don't forget you can rent one from many of the surf shops in the major surf resorts nearby. Swimmers with special circumstances are requested to contact us directly here.
There is all day parking close to the Sea Cadet Unit, but if that is full there is a Park and Ride system in operation close to Tesco Supermarket.
On the day swimmers need to register at the Sea Cadet Building near the start of the Camel Trail. On the day Registration opens at 09.30am and closes at 14.45pm. All swimmers must register in person. Please arrange to register as early as possible.
Please note: for swimmers coming over from Rock to register, you will need to allow 90 minutes to get from Rock to registration due to tidal conditions. There is no priority for swimmers on the ferry.
At registration you will be given a swim number which will be written on both hands and on your swim cap. You will be given a bag to put dry clothing, shoes and towel in, which will be taken over to Rock by ferry. This is your personal bag, please do not share it with another swimmer. Personal belongings and valuables should be given to your supporters or left in a secure place.
There will be a swimmers’ briefing in the start area and it begins at 16.05pm. Attendance is compulsory.
Swimmers are checked into the water using their swim numbers. Safety boats, qualified lifeguards, canoeists and boarders will escort you along the swim route which will be marked out by buoys.
Remember: this is a personal challenge, not a race.
First aiders will be on the water with full medical aid available at Rock.
When you arrive at Rock you will be checked out of the water using your swim number.
Swim photographers will be on site to record your arrival. You will then receive a bottle of water, and can collect your bag, swimT shirt and a pasty. Hot and cold drinks are also available. Those swimmers returning to Padstow will need to purchase a ticket on the ferry.
Then it’s time to enjoy the camaraderie, story telling, photographs, licensed bar and the music provided by The Friday Night Band on the harbour Bandstand.
The swim is organised and run by a local committee and enjoys the full support of Padstow Harbour Commissioners, Padstow Town Council and the Rock Inshore RNLI.
The number for each wave of swimmers is limited to make sure of the safety of our Swimmers. All swimmers will be provided with a numbered high visibility swim cap which must be worn during the swim.
Attendance at the swim briefing is compulsory for all swimmers.
Swimmers are accompanied by safety boats, qualified lifeguards, canoeists and boarders, all of whom can provide assistance if a swimmer needs to be taken out of the water. Medical assistance is available if required.
At this time, Coronavirus is not affecting any part of our Swim.
Will will continue to monitor the Governments guidance and update our information here accordingly if anything changes that could impact the Swim.