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Ambassador Jonathan Knott goes swimming for The Fund

Wednesday 26 June 2013

One of our new Trustees, Jonathan Knott, HM Ambassador at the British Embassy in Budapest, has wasted no time in fundraising for the charity.  Read about Jonathan's challenge below:

Jonathan completed his big swim on Saturday, 20 July 2013.  This blog tells about his swim, which proved a great success, as well as being a tremendous achievement.

This earlier news article quotes Jonathan's thoughts prior to undertaking the challenge:

"I joined the Lifeboat Fund this year as a trustee, shortly after I started to work here in Budapest, Hungary.   I’ve always enjoyed life on, in and around the water, so this was a great chance to offer something back to the people who had kept me safe.

"But as well as helping the Fund get itself in the best possible shape to raise money, I also wanted to do some fundraising myself here in Hungary.  And when I learned about the cross-Balaton open water swim I saw a great opportunity.  Lake Balaton is about 90 minutes from Budapest and is the biggest fresh water lake in Europe. More of a small sea than what I’ve thought of as lakes until now.  And the swim is 5.2 km.  If you swim in a straight line!

"To make my project’s appeal a bit wider I decided to enlist the help and support of the Hungarian lifesaving association.  And so decided to split the money raised 50/50 between them and the Fund.  In that way I thought I’d be likely to get more support locally.  So that’s what I’ve done and I’ve written to all the friendly individuals and companies I know to see if they’d like to support me.  With 2 weeks to go to the event we’re doing OK – pledges of some £3.5K.  I’ve also just launched a JustGiving page so that friends, colleagues and family can support me too.  You can find it at .  And I’ll be writing to colleagues in British Embassies in Central and E Europe to see whether they’ll make donations to it.

"As far as my aim goes, I’d like to be able to raise enough for the local lifesavers to buy a new defibrillator and enough to provide needed equipment for a member of the RNLI.  Or at least get close.  Longer term I hope the Hungarian Lifesavers and the RNLI will strike up a relationship which lets them exchange experience and training – and maybe even run exchange schemes.  I’ll see how that goes.

"In the meantime I’m in the local public pool 3 times a week, putting in the miles.  The good thing is that it’s the Hungarian Lifesavers who run the Balaton swim and they’ve promised to take care of me on the day!  I’ll be wearing a Union flag swimming hat so they can spot me."

Many congratulations Jonathan, on such a fast and rewarding Balaton swim!  The Lifeboat Fund - and the RNLI crews we're kitting-out through this year's Appeal - are incredibly grateful!