Yorkshire's brave souls take the plunge in annual New Year's Day dips

Record-breaking numbers of brave souls took the plunge into cold waters at various New Year’s Day dip events across Yorkshire to mark the start of 2020.

At Scarborough, hundreds of hardy swimmers braved the chilly North Sea for the coastal town’s annual event.

The New Year tradition, which took place at 12 noon, is organised by Scarborough Lions Club and is attended by thousands each year.

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The club used the dip to raise awareness of organ donation and collected donations for the Scarborough Lions, Kidney Research and Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Scarborough's annual New Year's Day Dip.

Meanwhile, in Ayton, villagers took part in the East v West Tug of War over the River Derwent, raising money for St Catherine’s, Macmillan and Mind.

The East team were victorious as hundreds turned out to watch the annual event. The celebrations continued into the evening at the Forge Valley Inn with a special charity auction and entertainment in memory of villager Pete Taylor who died last year.

Elsewhere, a record-breaking number of swimmers took the plunge at White Wells cottage in Ilkley, West Yorkshire for its annual event.

Those taking part were able to purchase a certificate to mark their achievement.

Scarborough's annual New Year's Day Dip.

Proprietor Mark Hunnebell said “At 3pm we had 275 people so far taking the plunge, which already beats last year’s record of 268.

“Everyone has really enjoyed themselves.

“It has been a lovely day weather-wise too. When I tested the water earlier this morning it was seven degrees.”

The annual Otley Dip, held in memory of Joe Town, a former lifesaving teacher, from Yeadon, who organised the event for more than 25 years also attracted record numbers.

Taking the plunge at White Wells.

Swimmers lined the banks of the River Wharfe at Wharfemeadows Park to enter the chilly waters in memory of Mr Town, who died in 2011.

The grand total of 91 people took part in the swim - the youngest being just nine-years-old and the eldest 71-years-old.

More than £300 was raised from bucket collections on the day, with the grand total for chosen charities still to be announced.

Taking the plunge at White Wells.
The annual Otley Dip.
In Ayton, villagers took part in the East v West Tug of War over the River Derwent,