The Dolly 2023 - The UK's greatest overnight social swim

  • June 24 - 25, 2023
  • Activities Away

    Thorpe Lane
    Lincoln, Lincolnshire LN6 9NW
Ticket Price (GBP) £150.00-£260.00 This event is now over

We are pleased to introduce you to "The Dolly"  the greatest overnight social swim in the U.K. for 2023.


Taking place at Activities Away in Lincoln UK, “The Dolly” is a night time swim challenge ….  starting at 9pm finishing at 5am! It can be undertaken as a Solo, as a Pair (alternating swimmers every full or double lap) or as a team of 4 people (rotating swimmers every full or double lap). “The Dolly” will commence at 21:00 on Saturday 24 June 2023 and will complete on Sunday 25 June 2023 at 05:00. Please note that this event is a Continuous swim. There is no set distance or speed. You swim as far as you can at your pace. Solos once you are in you are in, feeds take place in the water - just keep going. Pairs and teams you will switch as often as needed.


Please do not underestimate the magnitude of this challenge. You must be very competent and experienced in open water swimming, night swimming, cold water management and endurance events. There will be limited places available and all applications will be considered in light of your experience and training needs. If you require guidance as to which category may be most suitable for you we are happy to have a chat with you in advance of applying.


Yours in swimming....



A full Event Manual will be made available for successful applicants. 
Before applying for your solo, Pair or Team place please read the overview below 


In addition to the standard 100% Training Events Terms and conditions applicants need to be aware of the following. Your submitted application binds you (and us) to accepting the following entry conditions:


Solo swimmers - your aim is to complete a continuous 8 hour swim from dusk until dawn (9-5). Once in the water you simply keep going taking “in water” feeds from your support crew. If you need to get out for any reason your event will conclude at that point – you will not be permitted to re-enter the water. The event is not a race but we will note your laps and pace to help feedback for your training.


Pair and Team swimmers your aim is to have one swimmer in the water at all times. You may exchange swimmers at every 800m (full loop) or 1600m (double loop). The event is not a race it can be taken at your own pace but you can be certain that we will be keeping tabs on how many laps you record during the 8 hours.


A mile will require two full loops of the lake outside of the swim buoys. There will be one controlled ingress and egress point only for all swimmers. Solos will have their own feeding point, pairs and teams you will have your own tag point. 


You may wear any swimsuit or wetsuit. You may not be naked, swim hats are essential, ear plugs are optional but fins, hand paddles, snorkels, pull buoys and propulsive devices of any kind are not permitted. You may swim any stroke or combination of strokes. Swimmers must be fully respectful of each other, encouraging to all in and out of the water.



All participating swimmers must be able to swim one mile in 20-45 minutes. We also strongly recommend that you have experience of endurance swimming and night swimming before considering entering this event. Do not be fooled “Dolly” isn’t as easy going as she sounds. All swimmers MUST be age 18 plus on the date of the event. We reserve the right to REJECT and REFUND your application on the grounds of lack of experience. If you require guidance as to whether this event is for you please contact us before applying.


In addition to our water safety crew all entrants must be supported on the water by their own buddy. We will supply you with a sit on top craft and personal safety equipment as well as basic training – you will need to provide the buddy. We recommend the use of back rests (speak to us about these) We will also permit the use of your own sit on top craft as long as we approve these in advance. Please note STAND UP paddleboards or inflatable craft will not be accepted.


All Solo swimmers and pairs will require a minimum of two buddies, one dry land and one on water at all times (rotating, we cannot accept one buddy on the water for eight hours). Teams may self-support or use buddies, howwever a buddy will be required to accompany each swimmer.


What are “Buddies” and why do I need them?
We recognise the value of the swimmers’ buddy system, above all else as a primary check on each individual swimmers safety.  Indeed our risk assessment is built around a buddy system being in place. From years of experience there is nothing better than the support and care by peers during marathon swim events to ensure individual swimmer safety.


Your “Buddies” must be nominated and named people who will look after you on a mental, social and physical level. If you as a swimmer become unwell, show signs of excessive cold or fatigue then it is often your buddy who will withdraw you from the event, ensure appropriate aftercare and safe transfer from site. With this in mind we feel it appropriate that each buddy needs to be a suitable and knowledgeable person, over 25 years old who knows you - the swimmer, and knows swimming well. 


Specific roles include (but are not limited to):
Dry land - responsible for health of the swimmer and general welfare including time management, dealing with a cold swimmer, sorting out towels/warm gear/ help put on wetsuits/ look out for and know the symptoms of hypothermia. Generally the buddies are the safety team for that swimmer. 

On water, one buddy will be required to accompany the swimmer on the water during their swim (using approved paddle craft provided by us) on a 1:1 basis. This buddy will be briefed on use of craft and provided with life vest and safety helmet.


As with all good events, safety is of paramount importance. Solo swimmers, Pairs and Teams must comply at all times with the following safety measures, safety guidance and general rules:

Safety Measures:
The instructions and decisions of the event director and their staff, water safety and medical crews are final and unequivocal. All swimmers to wear an illuminated tow float and carry a whistle when swimming (we will supply). All swimmers to be accompanied by a BUDDY (we will supply the paddle craft and you supply the person to paddle it – no paddler – no swim – no exceptions.) 

Safety Guidance
If withdrawing from the event, please stop at the end of any full or half mile if possible. Withdrawal must be reported to the event director immediately. If you feel ill or cannot continue you must get out of the water immediately. Once withdrawn you will not be permitted to restart.


Event Safety Planning
The planning of this event has made safety its primary concern. As such we have taken all reasonable safety precautions. These include the provision of an event director, safety craft and staff (shifted), personal safety craft, dry changing facilities, light-up tow floats and safety whistles. We have also limited the number of applicants to just 24 places.  


Notwithstanding these safety provisions, we acknowledge that we simply cannot provide the level of personal support that your own nominated “buddies” can. With this in mind - ALL swimmers must have a buddy support as stated above. 


Whilst the buddy is there for the swimmer it is ultimately the swimmers responsibility to take all safety precautions and to be responsible for their fitness and suitability leading up to the event. The buddy will be responsible for the swimmers safety and well being both during the event and for 72 hours post event. We, the management and organisers of this event will not be held accountable for poor decision making by swimmers or their nominated “buddies”. 


Swim buoys, swimmers (we provide tow floats) and buddies (we provide lights) will all be illuminated. Lighting for  swimmers and safety crew will be provided. Swimmers & Kayakers will NOT be permitted to use any form of additional lighting on the water above that provided by the event.


Catering will be available on site throughout the event. Due to the nature of the athlete village / parking arrangements it is not suitable to allow any cooking with naked flames due to the risk of fire.


Our nominated charity is SHELTER.







Date & Time

Jun 24, 2023 9:00 pm - Jun 25, 2023 5:00 am

Venue Details

Activities Away

Thorpe Lane
Lincoln, Lincolnshire LN6 9NW Activities Away
100 Percent Training and Events