Amputee veterans finish Dover-France Channel swim

Relay team on the beach in Dover The four swam under Channel Swimming Association rules

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A team of amputee service veterans have completed a swim across the English Channel from Dover to France.

Conrad Thorpe, Jamie Gillespie, Stephen White and Craig Howorth, all single-leg amputees, completed the 21-mile swim to Cap Griz Nez on Friday night.

The event was thought to be the first swim by an all-amputee team.

The foursome set off on Thursday and swam without wetsuits, under Channel Swimming Association (CSA) rules.

The men did not wear prosthetic legs out of choice.

The servicemen's JustGiving page has so far raised more than £2,330 for the British Limbless Ex-Service Men's Association (Blesma).

On Friday night, Blesma tweeted: "The Channel Swimmers have reached France after a epic swim in cold water! An amazing achievement! #beyondinjury"

Limbless Channel swimmers Conrad Thorpe, Jamie Gillespie, Stephen White and Craig Howorth will attempt the swim in the next week

Conrad Thorpe (50): Born and raised in east Africa. Served in the Royal Marines for 21 years, including with the Special Boat Service. He damaged his ankle while running, which led to an elective amputation in 2011. Now boss of an African security company.

Jamie Gillespie (39): Involved in a road accident and lost his left leg in 1994 while serving as a sapper with the Royal Engineers. He was discharged from the Army in 1995 and retrained as a prosthetist. He lives in Watford, Hertfordshire.

Stephen White (49): Serving as a rifleman with The Royal Green Jackets when a knee injury led to him losing his left leg above the knee. He was discharged from the Army in 1987 and is now a businessman. He lives in Newport, Essex.

Craig Howorth (46): Lost his right leg in a road accident in 2006. He served as a submariner in the Royal Navy from 1988 to 1993. He lives in Bacup, Lancashire and works as a trail leader for Military Mountain Bikers.


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