Round-the-clock dive for conservation

11 March 2011

Nicola Thompson & Ashley WhiteReady to go: Opening divers Nicola Thompson and Ashley White, set and ready to start the marathon.

The countdown echoed around the UCT swimming pool complex at 11:59:50 on Saturday 19 February, to end 24 hours of continuous diving. The first pair of 48 divers descended into the pool at lunchtime on Friday, replaced every hour by a new pair. DIVER24 2011, part of the Underwater Club's DIVER outreach brand, is an annual event that raises funds for the work of its principal beneficiary, the Save our Seas Shark Centre, based in Kalk Bay.

Lurking at the bottom of a pool for an hour has its compensations. Participants entertained themselves by reading magazines, playing cards, building toy cars, writing messages to each other and watching the swimmers train overhead. A weekend campout on the adjoining lawn added to the atmosphere. Tired organisers said they were proud that in the space of one day almost 50 divers took to the pool and raised money for conservation. View the event video.

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