Tower Hamlets baby swims great lengths to raise money for charity

Dee McGuire (left), Pip McGuire (middle), Pips swimming instructor Celeste Acker (back) and Michael

Dee McGuire (left), Pip McGuire (middle), Pips swimming instructor Celeste Acker (back) and Michael McGuire (right). Pic: Kiara Casley. - Credit: Archant

A deaf two year old swimmer has a defied her small stature and made big splash, raising over £1500 for charity.

Rachael ‘Pip’ McGuire, of Cubitt Town, Isle of Dogs, raised £1,642 along with her parents Michael and Dee in the bi-annual Water Babies Splashathon, in aid of baby charity Tommy’s, making them the highest fundraisers in North East London.

Water Babies are the world’s largest baby swim school, helping babies from birth to feel at ease in the water.

Dee said: “We were very proud and excited seeing Pip complete her Splashathon challenges.

“Coming from Australia where news of children drowning is common, it is reassuring knowing that our child is so comfortable in water, learning skills in a safe and fun environment that could one day save her life.

“We were personally motivated to fundraise as we have suffered ourselves from miscarriages and Michael and I think that Tommy’s is a great cause funding vital research.”

Pip was born deaf but has been swimming in the pool at George Green School, Manchester Road, since she was four months and her instructor Hannah Yeomans, who has even learnt sign language to support Pip, is elated with her accomplishment.

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Hannah said: “The Splashathons are always so much fun and I cannot put in to words how proud we are of Pip McGuire for raising such a fantastic amount.

“We couldn’t be happier to raise money for such an important cause.

“The efforts of individual families like the McGuire’s were a crucial part of this success.”

Water Babies have raised £466,000 this year from competitions throughout the UK, with £25,754.81 coming from the North East London region.

Jane Brewin, Tommy’s chief executive, added: “Water Babies has achieved the incredible by fundraising a staggering £1.2million for Tommy’s since their very first Splashathon seven years ago.

“Their sizeable contribution has made such a difference to our research programmes and means that we can save the lives of more babies.”

For more information about Water Babies visit or call 020 8989 4821.