A SWIMMER completed a six-mile open water challenge to raise funds for a lifeboat charity.

Former Merchant Navy seaman Dave Jones has been a demonstrator at cleaning equipment firm Kärcher UK for more than two decades.

He took on the challenge to fundraise for the company’s charity partner, the RNLI.

Dave began open-water swimming 18 months ago to help keep fit and has since undertaken huge challenges.

This includes swimming for six miles in four and a half hours in aid of the RNLI.

Kärcher staff and Harwich RNLI volunteers were there to congratulate Dave on August 25 when he completed the swim challenge.

To date, Dave has raised almost £2,800.

As part of RNLI’s and Kärcher’s partnership, all 238 lifeboat stations around the UK and Ireland are due to receive Kärcher cleaning equipment over the next three years.

This will include professional-grade pressure washers and other important cleaning appliances to support with vital maintenance at every lifeboat station.

On his JustGiving fundraising page, Dave said: “The RNLI has always been close to my heart due to my connections with Harwich and my previous career.

‘I spent my early adulthood in the Merchant Navy and before that grew up in Harwich, a sea town on the East Coast, so I have seen first-hand the amazing work the RNLI do.”

He added: "Too many people are still drowning. More than ever we need the RNLI’s help.

"As a charity, the RNLI depends on our donations so it can go on saving lives and keeping us and our loved ones safe.

"RNLI lifesavers are our lifeline. They’re the lifeboat crews who provide 24-hour search and rescue right around the UK and Ireland.

"The lifeguards keeping watch on 240 of the busiest beaches in the UK and Channel Islands.

"And the RNLI safety teams and educators working tirelessly to stop people getting into trouble in the first place."

Ahead of the fundraiser, Karcher managing director Simon Keeper said: "Kärcher UK are proud sponsors of the RNLI and we are so proud of Dave taking on this challenge in support of the RNLI.

"Dave has been at Kärcher for 24 years working in our demonstration team. Here at Kärcher we want to wish Dave all the best in his upcoming challenge and can't wait to watch him swim across the finish line at RNLI Harwich."