Belfast Telegraph

Walliams in wetsuit for Thames swim

David Walliams has been forced to don a wetsuit despite hoping to swim the length of the Thames in just his trunks.

The funnyman, 40, was told to put on the wetsuit after his skin started to turn blue in the river.

A short distance into the swim for Sport Relief his trainer spotted a blue tinge on the Little Britain star's back and insisted the star change into his wetsuit at the first stop to stave off hypothermia.

David said: "The first section of the swim has really shocked me. The water is two degrees colder than when I swam the Channel, just 15 degrees. Although that doesn't sound like much, it has made a massive difference to how I've been able to cope."

He said: "Even though I don't like swimming in wetsuits because they're restrictive, I just had to wear one. Even if it only makes me think about the cold every 10 seconds rather than every five seconds... You can train as much as you want but with these kind of things you don't really know what it will be like until you start them."

David, who was waved off by model wife Lara Stone, is swimming 140 miles over eight days from Gloucestershire to London.

The comedian said that when the swim got really tough, he would think about how the money he raised would help some of the poorest people in the world.

"I met this boy in Kenya on the street. His name is Philip and he's 12-years-old and he's been homeless for four years," he added.

"Sport Relief funds a centre that gives him education, food, shelter and healthcare. I think about him because he is such a sweet boy, with so much hope."

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