Philip Mickman, with Gladstone Moorhouse (Mayor of Ossett) East Cliff

Philip Mickman

Philip Mickman, Channel Swimmer. With the Mayor of his home town of Ossett. Photograph. Associated Press Ltd. 1949

Philip Mickman first attempted to swim the channel in 1948 at the age of 17. This attempt was unsuccessful due to poor conditions (after 12 hours in the water). He tried again in the July of 1949, but again conditions were against him. He found himself swimming into a strong wind, and gave up after 13 hours at sea.

His third attempt in August of 1949 was, at last, successful, making him the youngest to have completed the swim at that time. Conditions were not perfect and it took him 23 hours,48min, landing at Kingsdown at 5.33am.

After a spell in the RAF he returned to Dover to complete his ambition, to complete the return journey, swimming from England to France. In September 1952, he achieved this, becoming the youngest man to swim the Channel both ways. Age 21.

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