OUTDOOR swimmers who were barred from going in the sea over the Christmas and New Year period did it from home instead.

Rhyl RNLI held the Virtual Festive Dip which called for people to do the ‘ice bucket challenge’ or have a cold bath in place of the UK swimming tradition, which could not go ahead due to coronavirus restrictions.

The event usually takes place at the Rhyl Lifeboat Station and due to the tides the dates alternate between Boxing Day and New Year’s Eve.

It was started by Rhyl Rugby Club members in 2009 but as more and more people took part the RNLI became involved to ensure the event was carried out safely.

This year the online version raised a total of £807, which will fund RNLI equipment and training so that it can carry out its daily volunteer rescue work along the North Wales coast.

Rhyl RNLI said: “It might have been different, but what a great challenge it’s been.

“We’ve seen participants taking part in the comfort of their own baths (some with hot water, some with cold water), people dipping in the sea safely, swimming in lakes and pools, as well as completely going for it in paddling pools and buckets, whilst using hosepipe and buckets of water.

“A huge thank you to everyone who took part.”