Hundreds join beach party
HUNDREDS frolicked in the sea at Exmouth for the traditional Christmas Day swim.
The crowd, many sporting festive outfits and others braving the conditions in skimpy swimwear, sung Merry Christmas before stampeding towards the water just before 11am.
The event was screened live on Channel Four as part of the Gordon Ramsay live Christmas Cookalong show.
Jessica Collinson, 19, was among those taking part. She said: "I look forward to it but look forward more to getting out and getting warm again."
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Laura Ghanavati, 19, of Exmouth, said: "It is a bit of a family tradition for us and it is great fun. But it is freezing."
Emily Foulston, 19, of Exmouth, said: "I used to live in Spain and I would do a swim on Christmas Day with my family. It is great to keep that going and there are a few more out here today."
A group of family and friends from Exmouth including Chloe Lomax, 12, Talitha White, 34, Dawn Harris, 42, Louise Lomax, 37, Conor Harris, ten, Mia Lomax, seven, and Megan Harris, were among those in fancy dress. Ms Lomax said: "It is a great way to start Christmas and becomes really addictive."
Hundreds of people also braved the waves for the swim at Budleigh Salterton which took place an hour before the Exmouth event at 10am.
Exmouth RNLI's inshore lifeboat was there early. And when everyone was out of the water it sped back round to Exmouth.
Among those taking part were friends of Budleigh father-of-four Chris Ralph, who died in April after collapsing while playing in the Devon Veterans' County Cup final.