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On the 6th of September, the Bowra Team attempted to do the impossible, follow their attempt on our social media channels.


7 Veterans brave the legendary 21-mile swim that defies limits. This ultimate test of endurance draws individuals seeking to push boundaries, but this challenge comes with treacherous currents and unforgiving tides, knowing that it has claimed lives of those who came before.


A team of extraordinary veterans embark on the Swim2Recovery challenge, pushing beyond their earlier exploits. Despite facing injuries and mental health issues from their service, this intrepid group aims to conquer the English Channel. Swim2Recovery is the brainchild of Mark Bowra, a decorated Special Forces Officer and founder of the Bowra Foundation. Through this event, the foundation empowers individuals with neurological issues to overcome physical and mental limitations. Join us in supporting this remarkable endeavor and discover the power of resilience. "What's inside matters," as Mark Bowra himself demonstrates, inspiring us all to push beyond our perceived boundaries.


Making waves for positive change: The Bowra Foundation Swims the Channel.

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Mark Bowra

A decorated Special Forces officer, Mark suffered a major stroke whilst driving back from London which dramatically altered his life. Mark was left paralysed on his right hand side and lost the ability to walk, talk, read and write. After a year recovering in hospital, Mark has gone on to participate in the Invictus Games winning medals for swimming as well as setting up the Bowra foundation in 2019 to help others suffering from neurological disorders.

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Lee Spencer

A Royal Marine for 24 years, Lee returned from three operational tours in Afghanistan unscathed. However, in 2014 Lee lost his right leg after stopping to help a motorist who had crashed into the central reservation in Surrey and was hit by an engine block. A year on from his accident and Lee rowed 3000 miles across the Atlantic in a team of four injured veterans, with only 3 legs between them they made history. Lee took this further and became the first physically disabled person to row from mainland Europe to South America solo and unsupported. He broke the able bodied record by an astonishing 36 days. His mission is to redefine perception, challenge stigma, drive change and ensure everyone has an opportunity to lead a life with dignity.

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Sally Orange MBE

Serving 22 years in the Royal Army Medical Corps as a Physiotherapy Officer, Sally has gone on to be the only person on the planet to complete a marathon on every continent in fancy dress…and you guessed it - as  pieces of fruit! She has run over 50 marathons, completed 8 full Ironman triathlons and captained the first British female team to complete the Race Across America. Sally has battled her own demons in the past having suffered from severe depression and chronic anxiety and speaks openly about her challenges to eradicate stigma.

Sally has recently been awarded MBE in the Kings birthday honours list!

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Titch Cormack

Having served for 21 years, Titch was medically discharged from the SBS in 2016 after dislocating both ankles, breaking his leg in two places and having his right knee reconstructed three times. On leaving the military, Titch turned to his passion of engineering and set up SBomb, a vintage workshop which features on BBC2’s ‘The Speedshop’ on Sunday nights. A lover of adventure, Titch will test out his own horsepower when swimming the Channel.

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Billy Billington

Billy was injured in Afghan whilst serving with the Royal Tank Regiment.  He was in command of an armoured vehicle when it was hit by an IED and Billy was thrown clear from the vehicle. Unfortunately debris from the explosion landed on him, causing him to lose use of his right hand & arm.  With a great love of motorbikes, Billy awoke from his coma after 8 days to be told he could never ride a motorbike again. That didn’t stop him and now Billy works alongside Titch Cormack on the BBC show ‘The Speedshop’.

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Jimmy Hill

In Afghanistan in December 2013, Jimmy was involved in a firefight at close proximity and was shot seven times, leaving him with life altering injuries including drop foot. Not only this, Jimmy lost a close colleague as well as his best four legged friend Rocco in the incident. ​

Whilst serving in the SBS, Jimmy had identified a gap in the market for rehabilitation for small animals and after being medically discharged Jimmy made his dream a reality and set up ‘Pawseidon’, a rehabilitation centre for dogs.

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Stu Hitchman

Stuart joined the Royal Marines in December 1985.  He spent his early career as a Mountain Leader before completing UK Special Forces Selection, serving alongside Mark Bowra in the Special Boat Service. Stuart was medically discharged, after 29 years in service, for depressive disorder, something he continues to battle with.  Since his discharge, Stuart has helped Mark establish the Bowra Foundation and is one of the founding Trustees of the charity.  

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