A group of Galashiels swimmers is taking on St Mary’s Loch in aid of the Rowan Boland Memorial Trust. Over 12 people are taking part in the challenge on Sunday, August 18 and Saturday, August 24 and have been training hard at Galashiels Swimming Pool in the first ever open water swim fundraiser for the Trust. One of the challengers, Richard Minnikin, said: “The length of the swim is 3.3 miles and is open to persons of competent level of swimming, we ask participants to be able to swim 1 mile indoor (64 lengths of a 25m pool). “There are a couple of members of the group who have swam in the loch before but not covered the length of it. “We are currently training in Loch of the Lowes twice a week to climatise the group to open water swimming, covering approximately distances of 750m to 2.4km in a session.” Among those taking part alongside Richard are former Braw Lads’ Sandy Blacklock and Roddy Gladstone. People can donate through the group’s JustGiving page – http://www.justgiving.com/Open-Water-Swim – or via the Facebook page ‘St.Mary’s Loch swim’. Richard added: “Our hope is to raise awareness of the Trust and of open water swimming in the Borders.” Both swims start at 12pm if anyone wishes to lend their support on the day.