'Bits Missing' Epic Swim Challenge presentation to Sixth Form

On Friday 27th May, Dr Mary Self visited the school to talk to the Sixth Form students and staff in the Arts Centre about her epic swim challenge in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust.


Mary was diagnosed with an aggressive form of bone cancer when she was 17 and in her Upper Sixth Form in 1983 - the result of which was a mid-thigh amputation and months of grueling chemotherapy at Christie's Hospital. During this treatment she still elected to take her A Levels and achieved three As, going on to study Medicine at Liverpool University. She is now a psychiatrist and is in charge of all psychiatric and mental health services for South Wales.

A keen supporter of the Teenage Cancer Trust (TCT) for the past 40 years, Mary has been involved with the charity as both a fundraiser and spokesperson and her latest endeavour to raise funds for the TCT is to swim the North Channel in a relay team! This June she will swim the North Channel - a treacherous stretch of open water that passes from Donaghadee in Northern Ireland to Portpatrick in Scotland - a total of 21 miles direct, but with the current swimmers can clock up to 40 miles. She will swim in a relay team with  four other amputees, under the team banner of "Bits Missing" in order to raise money for the TCT.


Mary explained where she found her passion for swimming, "After my operation I was encouraged to swim by my father and since then have always loved open water swimming. I got together with a team of like minded amputees to undertake this challenge in a very cold, rough and jellyfish infested stretch of water, along with the odd passing ship. The crossing has never been completed by a full para team before, so it's a first too!"


Above: Dr. Mary Self 

Ellesmere College students in St Luke's boarding house are also supporting Mary through their "Think Pink" initiative and have already raised over £500 for the TCT.

To donate via the Just Giving page please visit: Bits Missing North Channel Swim

27th May 2022  Back to News