Dippers set to take the plunge for charity

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Thousands of people are set to flock to Scarborough’s South Bay on January 1 for the traditional New Year’s Day dip.

The Scarborough Lions event attracts around 100 entrants each year and is a highlight on Scarborough’s festive calendar.

The dip, which takes place on the beach near the lifeboat house, opposite Scarborough Rowing Club is now into its 22nd year.

Organiser Alan Deacon said: “We’re looking forward to another good year. We normally get around 100 dippers, so we’re hoping for the same, and around 2,000 to 3,000 people watching.

“Every year it has grown, which is fantastic. And we’ve been very lucky in that every New Year’s Day in the past 22 years has been a nice day - except one!”

He added that everyone who wishes to take part must fill in a registration form, either in advance of the event or on the day.

Registration starts in the Rowing Club bar area at 10.30am. Changing facilities are available, with many dippers donning fancy dress.

At 12.15pm registration will close and dippers will be called onto the beach to get ready for the start.

By 12.30pm dippers will be assembled ready for the fancy dress judging, which will be carried out by Scarborough’s mayor Cllr Pat Marsburg.

Presentations will be made for the best male fancy dress, best female and best group.

Town crier Alan Booth will then lead people in the countdown to the dippers taking the plunge into the sea.

Spectators wishing to watch the dip need to be assembled by 12.30pm - dippers will go into the sea as soon as the fancy dress judging is over.

In the past people have turned up the watch the dip nearer to 1pm, which has been too late.

Those taking part will donate 75 per cent of the money raised to a charity of their choice, with the other 25 per cent going to local charities supported by Scarborough Lions.

Sponsor forms are available from the Scarborough News office at Newchase Court, Eastfield, Tourist Information Offices, the Crown Tavern pub and by emailing Alan on aldeacon2004@yahoo.co.uk

Alan has thanked everyone who in involved in organising the event, including Scarborough Council and Scarborough Rowing Club for their support and cooperation.

He is now encouraging regular dippers and new entrants alike to register and take the plunge this New Year to help raise as much as possible.