Dozens of swimmers brave New Year's Eve dip in Newquay wearing ball gowns

Anyone walking along the beach would have been shocked to see the women wading through the water in their ball gowns Credit: BPM Media

Dozens of swimmers tackled a New Year's Eve dip in Newquay with a difference - braving the water in their finest ball gowns.

More than 60 women gathered at Towan Beach, Cornwall, on New Year's Eve (31 December) to change into their finest frocks before wading out into the sea.

Along with shimmering satin and luxurious lace, there were wedding dresses, tiaras, and long velvet gloves worn by the hardy sea swimmers.

This is the third time the group have gone for a dip in their ball gowns Credit: BPM Media

The women regularly meet up to swim in more conventional attire with the town's Swimminwimmin group.

'Ball Gowns on the Beach' was started three years ago to give the swimmers an excuse to dress up in their fancy dresses during the pandemic.

Before heading into the sea in her sparkly emerald dress, Swimminwimmin's Katie Richards said: "We're gathered here today on New Year's Eve for what is now our third, annual Ball Gowns on the Beach.

More than 60 women met up for a final dip to see the New Year in Credit: BPM Media

"It started during Covid times when nobody could go out and celebrate the New Year - nobody had the opportunity to get dressed up.

"Although at the time we had to gather in smaller groups of six, we all gathered on the beach in our best finery, and decided to do what we had done throughout the whole of Covid, and take a dip in cold water.

"This is our third gathering - I think we've grown in numbers each year. So we'll just head in for a cold water dip to finish off the year as many of us have spent it - in the cold water."