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Ross Edgley becomes first man to swim around Great Britain after arriving back in Margate

By KentOnline reporter

After an epic five months in the water, a man has become the first person to swim around Britain.

Ross Edgley arrived in Margate this morning after setting off on the 2,000 mile challenge from the beach there on June 1.

Incredibly, the 33-year-old has completed 157 days without stepping foot on land once.

Ross Edgley set off on the challenge from Margate in June (5169117)
Ross Edgley set off on the challenge from Margate in June (5169117)

Since his send-off from the mayor of Margate - Cllr Julie Dellar - in summer, he has battled storm Callum, storm Ali, hundreds of jellyfish stings and a disintegrating tongue caused by salt water - but none of this has been enough to quash his efforts.

In an interview on Margate beach, Ross said: "When I was running in I was really worried that my legs would give way, I've not touched land for 157 days so there was a real worry that I could've face planted the beach in front of everybody and all the media.

"I got so choked up with the 300 swimmers who came out, I could hear them miles out making so much noise, I started to well up a little bit then and as I came in I had to put my googles on again because I was getting really choked up.

"All the sunset and sunrises were amazing but there are also real lows, like being stung in the face by a jellyfish.

"We went all the way round the coastline at such a slow pace, what was amazing for me was to see the wildlife in some of the more remote areas where we let nature survive and thrive, like Devon and North Scotland.

"Whereas in the more densely populated and tourist areas, we found a shoe in the middle of the sea and some roofing. It was really weird to see that."

Ross Edgley. Picture: Jeff Holmes / Red Bull Content Pool (4059809)
Ross Edgley. Picture: Jeff Holmes / Red Bull Content Pool (4059809)

His girlfriend Hester Sabery said: It’s just a huge relief and I’m just so happy to have him home really.”

“He had salt mouth, all his taste buds were coming off his tongue, he had his neck which had chaffed and was red raw. He’s now got jellyfish scars on his nose and cheeks, so yeah, he’s had a bit of a battering.”

“His mind set has just been so positive the whole of the way through, he’s had a smile on his face and I’ve never heard him complain once.”

In order to get ready for the radical adjustment, Ross has been undertaking daily exercises to ensure his land legs are back in time for the beach.

His diet is 15,000 calories a day. Picture: Harvey Gibson / Red Bull Content Pool (4059839)
His diet is 15,000 calories a day. Picture: Harvey Gibson / Red Bull Content Pool (4059839)

Ross has smashed a number of records since the swim began.

In mid-August, he broke the work record for the longest staged sea swim of 73 days, set by Benoît Lecomte who swam across the Atlantic Ocean in 1998.

Then in September, he became the first ever Britain to swim from Lands' End to John O'Groats (900 miles) in just 62 days.

Not one to shy away from a challenge, Ross has previously rope climbed the equivalent height of Mount Everest (8,848m) inside 24 hours, completed a triathlon with a tree strapped to his back, and finished a marathon while dragging a Mini Cooper.

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