Gwyn Haslock braves freezing waters at 71

Gwyn Haslock is Britain's first female surfing champion and at 71 years old, still plunges into Cornwall's icy winter waters. 

When she first started surfing in the 1960s, she was one of the only women competing and had to enter the men's categories. Five decades later, Gwyn is still at it, surfing almost every day.

Reflecting on how she began surfing, Gwyn said: "People used to say, 'I don't think you can go surfing unless you can carry the board', and in those days they were 10 feet tall and very heavy. I was determined to carry it so I put it on my head and took it to the beach. That is how I started."

She lives in the house where she grew up in Truro, Cornwall. The walls of her kitchen are lined with photographs and trophies which Gwyn has won over the years. She even has vintage cine-film of herself surfing in the 1960s.

Unconventional, perhaps? Gwyn is not bothered by that. She is certainly independent and has never allowed gender stereotypes or age barriers to stand between her and the sport she loves.

Dressed head-to-toe in her wetsuit and waterproofs, she loads up her small red car, attaches her eight-foot surfboard to the roof, then sets off to the beach again.

Gwyn's favourite place to surf is Towan Beach, where she braves the cold December waters, catching almost every wave. Her elder brother, Bob, accompanies her. He is credited with introducing Gwyn to the sport more than 50 years ago.

Source: Sky News

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