Mersey Swim 1914


Taylor again wins championship, keen racing

Liverpool Echo, Monday 29 June 1914

Considerable interest was taken in the race for the Mersey Swimming Championship on Saturday. The mile course was from Dingle Point to between the Indefatigable and Conway at Rock Ferry. There were about 1000 spectators on the Wallasey Ferry steamer John Joyce which had been chartered. Upon the arrival at Dingle Point of the public steamer, 13 competitors out of 14 entrants were started on their task, all bunched together, making it nearly impossible to distinguish one from another. Then, as the numbered boats picked up their respective charges, it was seen that R. E. Spiers, the young Liverpool champion had secured the lead, with the holder Taylor, Tyldesley, and Mitchinson in close company, between 12 and 20 yards behind, the remainder being spread-eagled about. With his powerful raking stroke, Spiers held his place until about 500 yards had been traversed, raising local hopes of victory. Taylor, however, is possessed of a great reputation for determination, and, admirably piloted, he began to reduce the margin of the lead, eventually getting ahead at 600 yards. Spiers endeavoured to stick to him but the Olympic crack gradually forged in front. Meanwhile some excellent bouts were seen at the rear, the Wigan pair, Morley and Mitchinson gamely striving for supremacy together, whilst Slater, Coxon and Hodgson also engaged in similar conflict. Taylor finally spurted away and won by about 50 yards from Spiers with Tyldesley 120 yards away. Morley and Mitchinson coming in finely, for the former to touch first by about 2 yards, whilst the remaining order was processional.

Official placings and times :-

1st H. Taylor, Hyde Seal, SC - 20.00

2nd, R. E. Spiers, Everton, SC - 20.30

3rd, K. Tyldesley, Tyldesley SC - 21.47

4th, E. Morley, Wigan SC, 22.26

5th, W. Mitchinson, Wigan SC, 22.28

6th, F. Slater, Birkenhead SC, 23.09

7th, R. Coxon, Seacombe and Egremont SC, 23.40

8th, J. Hodgson, Everton SC, 25.15

9th, S. Roberts, Warrington SC, 26.40

10th, R. Dowling, Bootle SC, 28.52

11th, T. B. Kersey, Edge Lane SC, 33.21

12th, W. Gamble, Woolton SC, 33.23

- D. Prendergast, Wallasey Police SC -

Gold medals were gained by the first four, gold centre medal fifth, silver medal sixth, and duly inscribed certificates to all who completed the course.

Only one competitor failed to qualify for a certificate, D. Prendergast, of Wallasey Police, this swimmer being seized with a severe attack of cramp, which necessitated being picked by the police launch. Massage and restoratives were applied and on arriving back at Liverpool he was conveyed to the Receiving House. Apart from this incident the function was a splendid success.


This maybe the same policeman as above, D. Prendergast, Wallasey Police June 10th 1929

Policeman's full-dress dive to rescue two men

A Wallasey policeman named David Prendergast dived fully dressed into the river Mersey yesterday to the rescue of two young men who were trying to swim ashore from a sinking canvas canoe.

It was near high tide at the time, and the river was rather rough, and it was with some difficulty that all three men were rescued by lifebelts and a small boat manned by a fisherman named Frank Hughes. Prendergast and one of the youths, Kenneth Sheridan, aged nineteen, of Elgin Drive, were taken to hospital, where Sheridan was detained. PC Prendergast was able to go home after treatment.

2013 all rights reserved