Swim star aged seven wins gold!

Benjamin Staniforth

Benjamin Staniforth

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A Hucknall youngster who swam the equivalent of the English Channel has won an award for swimming.

Benjamin Staniforth (7) was named 2014 Young Swimmer of the Year by the Amateur Swimming Association (ASA) at their inaugural awards ceremony in Birmingham, last week.

Benjamin was awarded gold for a marathon fundraising effort: he swam a mile a day for 21 days at Hucknall Leisure Centre and raised over £4,000 for the Wish Upon A Star charity.

He said: “I was so excited when they announced my name as I really didn’t expect to win. I swam the distance from England to France in a swimming pool which took me 21 days in a row. I was really happy to be able to raise money for the Wish Upon a Star Foundation which helps poorly people.”

The Hillside Primary pupil had been in training for the big event since January with his ‘inspirational’ swimming teacher, Marine Mace.

The challenge culminated in Benjamin completing his final mile with a new personal best time of 36mins 55 secs.

A family fun day was held to celebrate Benjamin’s achievement, supported by the community and paralympian Richard Whitehead MBE.

Benjamin is now thinking of his next challenge for the new year.