Magpas has been saving lives throughout the region since 1971.

The Emergency Medical Team and Community First Responders provide additional medical support to patients at the scene, making a real difference to many people’s lives.

The charity's highly skilled doctors and paramedics are now also able to operate throughout Bedfordshire thanks to partnerships with the East Anglian Air Ambulance Charity and the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust.

Magpas is a charity solely funded by donations and receives no money from the NHS or other Government funding.

Magpas was formed in 1971. In those days it was known as the Mid Anglia General Practitioner Accident Service (MAGPAS).

It was the brainchild of Dr Neville Silverston MBE (pictured right), a GP in Bottisham. Neville started a radio paging business for GPs so they could be called out after hours. For this innovation, Neville was given an award as one of the GPs of the year.

 Over the last 12 months the Emergency Medical Team has been called out more than 350 times when there have been trauma incidents. Many of these have involved patients who have sustained life-threatening injuries. In the same period, our Community First Responders volunteered more than 130,000 hours of cover, giving medical support in 1500 cases.
I'm swimming for MAGPAS! 

It has always been a dream of mine to swim the English Channel and to raise money for MAGPAS who helped to save my life as a baby. It is a huge undertaking and I am under no illusions as to how monumentous a challenge it is. I have an excellent swimming coach, Ed Williams, who has swum the channel himself and has helped me no end already. So far I have completed two open water swims, one on the Isle of Wight of 1.8 miles and one in the River Ouse of 3 miles. My times are improving, as is my stroke as is my understanding of the challenge as a whole. All money raised will go directly to MAGPAS. The training, coaching travelling to swims, entry costs and the pilot boat are all being paid for by myself. All work for Lloyds Gardens helps to fund my Channel swim and enables me to raise money for MAGPAS.


It is now only 3 months to the window of my swim, and the butterflies are in my stomach. I have swum up to 4 hours, which is a distance of 8 miles, about a third of the total journey. I am now starting to acclimatise to cold water, slowly at first but not too slowly!, as I must be ready to do my 6 hour qualifying swim on May 16th.


I write this little update on Sunday 16th May. I have just returned from the Lake District having swum for 2 hours in 9 - 10 degree Lake Coniston. I would have liked more but considering the temperature it was a good effort and worthy step on my training path. Its now only 7 weeks! Yikes!


It would be great if you could sponsor me and support a great cause!  


Debbie from M.A.G.P.A.S. has set up my sponsorship page bless her;


See the links page Wink


I am now writing on the 6th September 2010. A brief update is this...I went on to train weekends in Dover, and completed my 6 hour qualifier by swimming Lake Windemere. All was well...then I caught a stomach bug from the local river Cam, this was probably made possible because I had been physically exerting myself pretty much 7 days a week. I dont think I rested enough and was therefor susceptible to illness. I came down with a bug called cryptosporidium and after 5 days of going between my bed and the bathroom I was very depleted. I had only two weeks to rest and recouperate before my swim date. Due to my pigheadedness I went ahead with it and managed to swim for around 9 hours, reaching French water after 14 miles, 2/3 of the way.

Then my depleted state had caught up with me and the Captain (top banana!) rightfully so called an end to the swim...it was time to go home.


I was truly gutted!


Since then I have realised that it was a great effort (if I say so myself Laughing) and that next year I will go in full health with lessons learnt, not forgetting what I did right as well as what I need to change, not to throw the baby out with the bath water. Pigheadedness can be a good thing, it lead me to that position, also pigheadedness can be a bad thing, it lead me to that position.


Anyway thank you for reading this, thank you to all the wonderful people who supported me and thank you for the very generous donations for a very worthy cause! over £2,000 banked and a bit more to come!


As I write this update it's the 9/5/2011. I went to Australia for work during our winter/aus summer as I would not have had work during such a harsh winter here. I was lucky and managed to make it work whilst entering a couple of swims. I swam the Bondi to Bronte ocean swim, which was quite a short but very scenic Sydney swim, about 2 miles. More substantially I swam in the Rottnest Channel swim, about 14 miles from mainland Perth to Rottnest Island.

This was indeed a challenge, very different to the English Channel, with air temperature of around 40'C and water temp of 25'C. I was cooked! It took around the same time as my EC attempt, but at the end of this swim I was elated and drank with my friends, the crew, until the pub shut, a great day was had by all! I put this down to two main factors, 1) I started the race in full health, 2) it seems to be the Australian culture of mixing beer with everything!!

I am now back in England and in training for an English Channel relay this year, and a solo next year, very much looking forward to both!

I am now looking to work hard and get my nose to the grindstone, so if you need some help with your garden, whatever that might be, please get in touch.


I have contacted Debbie at magpas and the total raised was £2,646!!

Thank you again!


This amount will cover the costs of just over 4 emergency medical call outs to a scene of trauma, whether that is a car crash or a baby not breathing. Well done and thank you! You have helped save 4 (or more, depending on number of casualties) lives. I am grateful, magpas is grateful and the people who have a chance of living when it looked like they would probably die are certainly grateful :-)


The 6 person Channel relay team "Vertically Channelled" completed the swim in 13 hrs 57 minutes. This was a great experience with wonderful people. The team comprised of Lee who organised it, Richard, Kevin, Juliet Ian and myself. I was lucky enough to be honoured with the final leg...I landed it! This was luck as it was my turn at that time to swim, but I took the opportunity with both hands and swam my heart out. Of all the wonderful speeches I had rehearsed in my head that I would make when landing on French soil, I simply said "Thank goodness!" (polite version), and felt an amzing sense of relief and elation...whilst getting my breath back and holding on to a bolder in the pitch black. Funnily enough I had envisioned myself running up a sandy beach to the Rocky theme tune in beautiful sunshine! haha! Life isnt always as plane sailing as you would like hey? I had made it to French soil (bolders). I returned to the dinghy and then back to the pilot boat. We had done it!!!


It is now mid April 2012 and by a miracle I have a swim slot in August 2012. I am now back in training and must bring to the front of my mind all of the positivity that people have given me, that I have earnt, that I have heard and read. Make sure that I go over and retain what I have learnt from mistakes made. Once more unto the breach dear friends! :-)


YES!!! I DID IT!!! 14hr 19min. It was the hardest thing/challenge/experience/endeavour/day that I have ever had in my life. It nearly broke me more than once. I had to battle in my mind to carry on, as they say you get 'demons' in your mind that tell you its ok to stop and get on the boat, get dry and warm, eat whatever you feel like. I felt like I could not manage it but found inspiration from my friends, family, experience, well wishers and God. It really pushed me. I would say it is a full on physical, mental and spiritual journey. The lead up to the swim and the swim itself is a concentrated test of what you have been through in training and life. Some people may find it easy, I didnt. At points I did enjoy it and I did find it beautiful, I was happy to be there, but other times it was dark and troublesome.

At one point I thought I could not go on, so I thought I could only mentally view myself swimming to the next feed (which at this point were every half hour) and then take it from there...I got to my next feed, got something warm inside me and felt a bit better, then a big ferry or tanker had gone past and its bow wave came from behind us. I was concentrating on my stroke and really got into (or onto) the waves. I could feel myself riding the waves. As I went down I pushed forwards and then glided up the next one that swelled, I imagined myself on a gentle rollercoaster or like a dolphin riding the waves. It was beautiful and I thought yes I can do it. Im enjoying it. If I can enjoy it in probably the middle of the sea then Ill be fine.


There were lots of thoughts, challenges, moments, good and bad. Wonderful and terrible. I felt like I was done for more than once, but I made it through.


I had a wonderful time, and incredibly emotional...I cried at the Olympics, my build up, my friends successful swim the day before, my swim, and my friends unsuccessful swim the day after, I will rewrite that, the Olympics, the build up, my friends swim the day before, my swim, and my friends swim the day after. I saw the Dover Town Hall as the Valhalla of swimming, certainly my Valhalla on Earth. I wrote in Johns book that I will have a drink with him in Valhalla when we get there, and I know I will have a drink there too with Bryn. In the meantime it is my honour to be his friend.


When you have swum the English Channel you can write your name in a local pub wall, here is what I wrote;


Lloyd Clarke

14hr 19min

13th Aug 2012

With the help

of my crew;

Helen, Gary,

Gemma, Tindi:

Friends, Family

fb and God

I am now

forever a Channel

Swimmer Laughing



Love and best wishes,

Lloyd xxx






Ausy refreshment during Rottnest swim