Oly’s back in the swim in battle against plastics pollution

DORSET eco swimmer Oly Rush is gearing up for his next dip to raise awareness of the plastic pollution problem.

Oly, from Upton, is training for a 24-hour swim around the Greek island of Ithaca.

The plunge will follow similar swims that saw him break the record for swimming around the Isle of Wight – going non-stop for 37 hours.

His latest adventure, the 46 miles around Ithaca, is set to take place in September.

Oly has also picked up a new backer, in the form of recruitment firm Green Folk, which contacted him after his Isle of Wight swim.

Chris Payne of Green Folk and marathon swimmer Oly Rush

Green Folk, headquartered in Hook, Hampshire, is sponsoring Oly’s swim, as well as supporting regular beach cleans on the Dorset coast after Oly’s efforts caught the eye of company owner Chris Payne.

“Chris contacted me after seeing publicity about my swims and offered to get involved,” said Oly.

“He helps fund my beach cleans and comes and joins in, along with his staff.

“He really walks the walk – he means what he says and puts his money where his mouth is.

“Without the generosity of sponsors and supporters I wouldn’t be able to do the work I do, or raise the profile of plastic pollution through my swims.

“The Ithaca challenge is 46 miles and will take me between 22 and 28 hours.

“I chose this island because a friend showed me the work the Healthy Seas charity had been doing there.

“It is a good size to swim around and because the sea is warm it means I won’t have to wear a wetsuit.

“I will be out there from the middle of August and the swim will be in the first week of September, and I hope to get the locals involved and even visit schools over there.”

Chris said: “Our recruitment business is carbon neutral and we use profits to help the environment – so far we’ve planted nearly 6,000 trees.

“When I saw what Oly was doing I had to get in touch and help him. His beach cleans align with what we are doing and he makes a huge difference by removing plastic.

“We are getting behind his next swim enabling him to raise more awareness about plastic in the oceans – and money to help combat it.

“We’d urge anyone who is concerned about the environment to get behind Oly, give him their support and donate some money.”

Thanks to the sponsorship of Green Folk, all money donated will go to Project Planet and Greece-based Healthy Seas.

For more details of the swim, visit the website and to make a donation, log on to

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