Butlins 1954 Race Dinner, Folkestone; Barnie, Pereira and Beltran - Fisher in the background.
Butlin’s International Channel Swim, 1954; Dinner and Prize Giving, The Leas Cliff Hall, Folkestone, Kent. Baptista Pereira, Portugal, winner of the 1954 race being raised aloft by Ned Barnie, Great Britain, and Damien Piza Beltran, Mexico, after the presentation of awards; Brenda Fisher the ladies winner is in the background.
Baptista Pereira won the Billy Butlin 1954 Cross Channel Swimming Race, winning in a time of 12hrs 26secs.
In the 1959 Butlin swim he was placed 3rd in a time of 13hrs 12mins. He also entered the 1955, 1956 and 1957 swims but was unable to start.
He set a new record for the Strait of Gibraltar in 5hrs 4mins in 1956 and he again set a new record of 4hrs 34mins.
Ned Barnie was the first Scotsman to swim the Channel in 1950, time 14hrs 45mins, in the Daily Mail Race. He was the first man to swim it in both directions in 1951; the first swim was England to France, 19hrs 02mins and the second was in the Daily Mail swim in 15hrs 01mins. He made 6 unsuccessful attempts between 1952 to 1956.
Damian Piza Beltran, of Mexico was unsuccessful; he swam for 5 hours, and at the date of the swim was 36 years old. In 1955 he again swam in a Billy Butlin swim and was one of the four finishers in that race, his swim time was 15hrs and 8mins. He was also successfull in 1953 in a time of 15hrs. 23mins. It was an independant swim. He was the first Mexican to swam the Channel. He doubled up on film for Johnny Weissmuller, in the Tarzan films. He was also a crooner in a Night Club.
A Black and White photograph. From the Sam Rockett Collection.