A family nude swim event held annually at Waterworld in Stoke-on-Trent is set to go ahead this weekend despite the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and criticism faced in previous years.
The skinny dipping session – which is organised by British Naturism – is open to adults and kids of all ages.
Organisers have spoken out ahead of this weekend to reassure members that the naked swim – described as the “biggest waterpark event of the year” – is still planned to go ahead with a number of necessary COVID-safe measures put in place.
Those attending will be able to ditch their usual swimming attire to ride on some of the best slides in nothing but their birthday suit.
The event usually attracts 300 people to the Staffordshire city, but in previous years has garnered widespread criticism among members of the public that it could attract people looking to prey on youngsters, and one session held last year saw even around 20 protesters gather outside the entrance to Waterworld with the police in attendance.
A petition was also set up.
However, British Naturism and Waterworld have both strongly defended the event.
In a statement previously issued to StokeonTrentLive, a spokesperson for British Naturism said: “British Naturism is an organisation that has been in existence for over 50 years with many of our clubs being even older.
“We have a membership of 9,000 over 18s.
“We take our safeguarding and health and safety responsibility seriously and review our practices in advance of every event we run. We have a robust child and vulnerable adults safeguarding policy – it’s actually rather ignorant of the complainers to assume that we don’t. It was developed in conjunction with the NSPCC and is reviewed annually.
“We also have a strict ‘no cameras’ rule with any photographs to record the event only being taken by our official photographer, who follow certain guidelines about what can be taken.
“Children at our events are always supervised by their parents and not allowed to attend unaccompanied – unlike schools, churches, scouts, play areas and other venues where parents opt to leave their children in the care of others.
“Naturist swims are being successfully – and safely – run all around the country throughout the year.”
Waterworld owner Mo Chaudry added: “It’s time to set the record straight and get this situation into perspective.
“British Naturism is a perfectly law-abiding organisation which has been hiring our venue – and many similar sites across the UK – for private swimming events for more than 20 years. In all that time, the Waterworld sessions have passed off happily and peacefully, and we have never had any reasons for concern.
“It’s important to point out that these events are completely private. They are not open to anyone to simply walk in off the street. They are restricted to the organisation’s members and pre-registered guests, and no children attend without parents or guardians.
“I am not a naturist, but I fiercely defend the rights of those who choose to be.
“It is not Waterworld’s role to be judge and jury on a matter where no laws of the land are being broken [and] we hire out our venue to a wide range of different groups for their private functions.
“The morally right thing to do is for us to continue giving our full support to British Naturism, which has exactly the same rights to hire our facility as any other law-abiding organisation.”
Liam Gallagher apologises on Noel’s behalf for brother’s ‘p*ss poor’ Joy Division cover
Liam Gallagher has issued an apology “on behalf of [his] family” for his brother’s cover of a song by another legendary Manchester band.
Stop the presses, breaking news – the Gallagher brothers are slagging each other off again.
In what will be a shock to absolutely no one, Liam Gallagher has hopped onto his favourite social media platform Twitter once again this week to take another unprovoked aim at his beloved older brother – and this time, call him out for his recent cover of the iconic 1980 hit ‘Love Will Tear Us Apart’ by fellow Manchester band Joy Division.
Noel Gallagher recently performed a rendition of the Joy Division classic on BBC Radio 2 as part of the radio station’s popular Piano Room series, and was accompanied by his band, High Flying Birds, for the track, alongside the BBC Concert Orchestra.
The former Oasis co-lead vocalist and guitarist explained that he had chosen to cover the song as he would often play “this version of it at home down the years”.
But Noel did reveal to host Vernon Kay that he was cautious about doing so, and went on to express some initial trepidation about performing his rendition and putting it out into the world, mainly because “it’s such an iconic song, and being from Manchester… well, this is going to be tricky.”
The 56-year-old admitted he kept asking himself “How can I get away with that?”
He continued: “But now I’ve got my own studio, I went and did a little demo of it and I was like ‘you know what? I think I might be able to pull this off.”
One person who clearly didn’t think Noel could “pull this off” was his brother Liam, though.
Reacting to the cover in typical Liam Gallagher fashion, the former Oasis frontman wrote in a now-viral tweet yesterday evening: “I must once again apologise on behalf of my family for r kid’s p*ss poor and damn rite blasphemous version of Joy Division’s Love Will Tear Us Apart.
“Tut f***ing tut SORRY.”
And unfortunately for Noel, the comments underneath BBC Radio 2’s post of a snippet of the cover on its official Instagram account appears to show that a fair few others agree with Liam on this one.
“If you wanna win a race, choose NG as a competitor. The only one that’s been able to destroy Oasis, his band, the music. Terrible cover,” one person wrote.
“That’s a terrible terrible cover,” another person simply stated.
A third wrote in the comments: “Kinda sounds boring doesn’t it? I love Noel, but this cover ain’t it chief,” while a fourth added: “I hope he realise by himself that this is one of his worst covers ever,” and another, at least politely, claimed it was: “Definitely a bit different to the original.”
Of course, there are two sides to every story though, and there’s also plenty of positive comments and reactions under the video too to balance out the less-than-favourable takes.
So for now, this exchange will just get added to the seemingly never-ending Gallagher row saga.
Featured Image – BBC
Chester Zoo calls for runners to take on new charity 10k to help ‘save endangered animals’
Chester Zoo is calling for thousands of runners to take on a charity 10k through the zoo’s grounds in a bid to help save one of its many endangered species.
The UK’s biggest charity zoo is looking for 2,500 runners of all abilities to sign up for its brand-new ‘Run for Nature‘ later this year – which begins inside the zoo’s 128-acre grounds, and sees participants race past the elephant, giant otter, and giraffe habitats, all before heading out and around the wider countryside estate.
As well as the 10k route, there’s also a special one-mile ‘zoom’ fun run around the zoo, which is perfect for energetic kids under 12.
All runners will get a medal when they cross the finish line, and there’ll even be some exciting prizes up for grabs for those who raise the most money.
Taking place on Sunday 24 September, all funds raised from the run will go towards the Chester Zoo’s ongoing and extremely-important efforts to find a vaccine for a deadly virus that threatens endangered elephant populations all across the world – which is known as Elephant Endotheliotropic Herpesvirus (EEHV).
Scientists at the zoo are currently in the middle of the world’s first vaccine pilot study to fight the virus, and hope that proceeds raised from the upcoming events can help “create a future where Asian elephants survive and thrive.”
“We’re so excited to be able to offer places for 2,500 fundraisers to run our first ever 10k Run for Nature later this year,” explained Hannah Wright, Fundraising Lead at Chester Zoo.
“As a charity, fundraising is at the core of this event, but we also hope that it’s a great fun event that the whole family can get involved in – whether running, supporting or sponsoring.
“All participants will be receive a sustainable medal and top fundraisers will have the opportunity to win a variety of prizes, which include annual memberships, animal experiences, and meal vouchers for our gastro pub, The Oakfield, as well as a selection of animal adoptions.”