A SWIMMING coach took to the waves battling against rough seas and jellyfish to cross the channel and raise cash for charity.

Katie Holmes, a coach at Harwich Swimming Club, wanted to swim the channel but a shoulder injury meant she couldn't complete the 21 mile alone.

So four of her friends, Katie Sim from Colchester, Wendy Atkinson from Ipswich, Russell Parker from Clacton and Mark Oxford from Hadleigh, came forward to join the challenge, each taking turns to complete an hour leg along the way.

It took 13 hours and 24 minutes for the team to complete the swim on August 4, which had to be done without wetsuits.

Katie said: "It was an amazing experience, I'm really pleased with how it went.

"I think the kids at Harwich thought I was crazy when I said I was doing it without a wet suit but I think it has been an inspiration to them."

Together they raised more than £1,500 for charity, which will be split between Cancer Research, St Helena Hospice Colchester and Swan UK.