Waterlog Reswum

“That evening, I went to Bungay in search of ‘Bungay Beach’, one of the town’s swimming holes, across the marshy wastes of Outney Common, where the river kinks into a two-mile...

  “Dudley and I set off barefoot over the sandy boardwalk through the wooded dunes and emerged blinking from the shade into the great gleaming theatre of Holkham Bay. A majestic...

“We sat facing other in rows, like labourers being driven to work in the back of a transit van, or nude commuters in the tube. Steam rises up from beneath, through...

“I went in the next day with two or three dozen early-morning regulars, and for a glorious moment, during some lull in the proceedings, I had the entire sixty-seven yards of...

“I had come down the path along the disintegrated cliffs from the magnificent ruined church at Covehithe. Each year, the path moves further inland across the fields because great hunks of...

“About a mile downstream from Burford on the meandering footpath to Widford, I found the finest oxbow bend I have ever seen. Sheep grazed the meadows, and the cropped grass was...

“Swimming without a roof over your head is now a mildly subversive activity, like having an allotment, insisting on your right to walk a footpath, or riding a bicycle.” It’s now...

It’s almost three months now since I braved the waters of the Waveney and took my last swim in the strokes of Roger Deakin. In that time it’s gone from damp...

“I was swimming ten miles from the moat, where the Waveney defines the border between Norfolk and Suffolk. It is a secret river, by turns lazy and agile, dashing over shallow...

“I had ridden here under my own steam, and here I was in the centre of London gazing up at the stars in the utmost luxury of a heated outdoor pool....