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'The Sea is my Religion' pop-up event: A wave of success!



Imagine walking into a church where sea swimmers dance in light projections on historic walls, while the sounds of waves and seabirds fill the air. You're immersed in a multi-sensory experience that mirrors different times of the day, complete with the mesmerising rhythm of sunsets over our beloved Solent. Sea swimmers, cloaked in their swim robes, gather, forming an unconventional yet captivating ritual.


Over fifty new faces, mostly locals who had never stepped foot in The Royal Garrison Church, plunged into this experience with us. Their feedback was a resounding thumbs up! They loved how the church's architectural charm, perfectly harmonised with the art installation. It's not every day you get to enjoy an event, explore art, and learn about our rich Naval history in one go!


This gathering wasn't just about art and architecture. It was a celebration of unity and resilience, honouring our post-Covid community. Participants from all walks of life shared their sea swimming tales, spotlighting the value of outdoor activities for mental and physical health. What's more, everyone got to be a part of the show. Images, films, and stories submitted by the swimmers, the community, made this a uniquely participatory experience. Attendees left feeling connected to nature, their community and, of course, the invigorating joy of open sea swimming.


The event brought new life into the building following a major restoration project and recharged our community spirit. Thanks to the positivity and enthusiasm, we're excited to host more such events, so stay tuned for more oceanic adventures!


Organised by SCT https://www.sustainableconservationtrust.com/ and created and delivered by talented artist Thomas Buckley https://www.thomas-buckley.com/





‘I sent my daughter the video of me at your very moving and beautiful work. She is an outreach worker in Papua New Guinea, she liked it so much she is showing her whole group the video. I wanted to share this as I don’t believe you would have thought it could bring pleasure to people the other side of the World. Thank you.’

‘You were THE topic of conversation this morning on the beach. Everyone who could get there was blown away by it and those that couldn’t get there were sorry to have missed it.

So many of us still on a high from last night, some tears when people tried to describe it to the other this morning, it was just so moving.’

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