Become One of Ballina’s Swimming greats this September 13th by swimming the Moy Swim.

Become One of Ballina’s Swimming greats this September 13th by swimming the Moy Swim.

Great news in Ballina as the organisers of the Moy Swim announce the swim will take place in 2020, with a date now set for Sunday 13th September @ 3pm starting at the Ham bridge, by St Muredachs Cathedral, following the traditional route down as far as the Quay Village, with a shorter swim route also in place for those leisure swimmers.

One of the oldest river swims in Ireland, the Moy Swim has over the years run in conjunction with the Ballina Salmon Festival. With the covid pandemic hitting the country, and the Salmon Festival being postponed in July, including the Moy Swim, everyone involved is delighted that the swim can go ahead, in compliance with Government directive.

About the Swim

The River Moy Swim returned to the banks of the Moy in 2018 after an absence of more than 30 years, it ran again in 2019 and as the event was a great success then, the 3rd Annual running of the fantastic Moy Swim returns in 2020, against all odds.

The Swim has great history in the town and started in Ballina back in the 1950’s and was held for many years. For all those open water enthusiasts, Ballina as a town and the River Moy can proudly boast that the first man to swim the English Channel in 1875 also knew the town well, as he came here on several occasions as captain of a ship taking cargo to local merchants. While preparing for his Channel swim and place in history, Captain Matthew Webb became the first man to swim Killala Bay in 1974, from the Enniscrone (Sligo) side to Kilcummin (Mayo side). He used to train in the River Moy and boasted to fellow drinkers in McDonnells Pub on Bridge Street (now the Bolg Bui) that he would buy them all a drink after successfully accomplishing his Channel challenge.

By taking part in the swim you too can become of part of this town’s great history. The original swim started at the famous salmon weirs and swimmers would dive in there and swim to St. Muredach’s College. The winning cup, known as ‘The Bishop’s Cup’ was presented to the Swimming Club by the late Bishop O’Boyle many years ago. This year’s swim will start at the Ham Bridge at the bottom of Ardnaree and will finish at the Quay Village Jetty.

Make like a salmon this autumn and swim the full 2.5km down the River Moy from St Muredach’s Cathedral to the Quay, or try out our shorter route of 600m – which is open for adults or teenagers to give a go!

All events are run in conjunction with Swim Ireland and Mayo Sports Partnership to offer you the safest and most enjoyable swim possible.

River Moy Swim: 2.5km – 16yrs+ | €25


Adult Novice Swim: 600m – 18yrs+ | €15


Teens Only Swim: 600m – 11-17yrs | FREE


You don’t need to be a Swim Ireland member to sign up for any of the River Moy Swims, but you do need to wear a wetsuit no matter which swim you are going to do.

One of the race organisers and former President of Swim Ireland Mary Dunne relates“ I am passionate about swimming and we have the most fantastic place to swim in the heart of the town, it is great to see the revival of this wonderful event in Ballina, with it geting bigger each year. 2020 has proven to be a challenge for the organisers but once we got the go ahead that it can be run in accordance with Government guidleines, albeit they have moved somewhat from when the date was first set, this year, I am even more excited that children will again get this the opportunity to swim down the River Moy”

Eamon Walkin race organiser said “ Ballina has a fantastic swimming history and it is important as a community we embrace and celebrate our river and the great swimmers that we have in the town. We are delighted to bring back this great event in 2020, against all the odds and delighted to have the additional support of Ballina Salmon Festival, Ballina Chamber of Commerce, Ballina Municipal District Council and Council sponsors,
Swim Ireland and Mayo Sports Partnership .

Further details about the swim contact
[email protected]

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