Wharfemeadows Park

Swimmers take the plunge for New Year's Day dips across Yorkshire

A bracing New Year's Day dip has become a festive tradition.

Huge crowds gathered at Wharfemeadows Park in Otley to watch swimmers brave the freezing River Wharfe in memory of local swimming teacher Joe Town, who ran the event for over 25 years until his death in 2011. Mr Town had learned to swim in the Wharfe as a child. In nearby Ilkley, other hardy souls headed for the White Wells Spa Cottage on Ilkley Moor, where the historic plunge pool is still in use. New Year's Day is the attraction's most popular day for 'plunging'. On the coast, swimmers in fancy dress took to the waves at Scarborough's South Bay for the town's long-established winter dip.

Stuart Tasker was taking part in his 20th New Year's Day dip

1. River Wharfe, Otley

Stuart Tasker was taking part in his 20th New Year's Day dip
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Jules Hooper, of Ilkley, braves the water

2. White Wells, Ilkley

Jules Hooper, of Ilkley, braves the water
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Many swimmers wear fancy dress for charity

3. South Bay, Scarborough

Many swimmers wear fancy dress for charity
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Crowds enjoy the festive swim

4. South Bay, Scarborough

Crowds enjoy the festive swim
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