Cookstown men complete Lough Neagh Charity Swim

Lucas Kowalczyk, John Howard, Eddie Black and Keith Ruddell completed the Lough Neagh Challenge.

Lucas Kowalczyk, John Howard, Eddie Black and Keith Ruddell completed the Lough Neagh Challenge.

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ON Saturday 8 September, four local men set themselves a challenge to swim Lough Neagh in support of Philip Mitchell’s Challenge 20/20.

The Four Cookstown men decided to set themselves a challenge to swim Lough Neagh in a bid to help Philip reach his goal of raising £10,000.00 in aid of local charity the Royal National Institute of Blind People Northern Ireland (RNIB NI.).

Lucas Kowalczyk successfully swam the 6 miles across Lough Neagh while John Howard, Eddie Black and Keith Ruddell swam relays across the same stretch of the Lough.

The four men began their challenge at 8.30am and completed the challenge arriving at Ballyronan Marina at 2pm.

Philip Mitchell said: “After having completed walking 26.2 miles every day for 20 consecutive days I understand what strength and determination goes into arranging and completing any challenge, I would like to thank Lucas, John, Eddie and Keith for creating this event and helping me towards reaching my goal of raising £10,000.00 for RNIB NI. I would also like to thank Cookstown Rotary Club for donating money towards fuel for Challenge 20/20, the two supporting canoeists accompanying the swimmers and Ballyronan Boat Club who supplied the safety support boat.”

Jackie Cotton, Community Vision Coordinator for RNIB NI said “I would like to thank everyone involved in the swim challenge of Lough Neagh in support of Philip’s Challenge 20/20. Philip set himself an amazing challenge to walk 20 marathons over 20 days and to see others taking inspiration from this to complete challenge’s of their own and all in support of RNIB NI is phenomenal.”

If you wish to find out more about Philip’s ‘Challenge 20/20’ activities or, you wish to donate, then you can contact Philip on, mitch1981@hotmail.co.uk