Mercedes Gleitze(1900-1981), Swimmer
Sitter in 7 portraits
Swimmer. Born in Brighton, Gleitze set many records for endurance in swimming, she set the British record for swimming for 46 hours (1932). She was the first British woman to swim the English Channel which she completed in 15 hours and 15 minutes (1927). She was also the first to swim the Straits of Gibraltar (1928). She actively fundraised selling postcards of herself amongst other initiatives. After her retirement in 1932, she devoted her remaining fortune to her cause, setting up Mercedes Gleitze Home for Destitute Men and Women in Leicester (1933).
Watch a film clip on the sitter from the BBC Archive in the Media section below
by J.G. Whorwell & Son
bromide press print, 8 August 1930
- Patrick Joseph Carey (husband)
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