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First British citizen crosses Bangla Channel


As part of her initiative to raise awareness about drowning in Bangladesh, British journalist Becky Horsbrugh on Sunday crossed the 16-kilometre Bangla Channel from Teknaf to the Saint Martin’s Island in the Bay of Bengal.

It took her 4.45 hours to reach Saint Martin swimming across the channel amid strong current, Associated Press’ (AP’s) Bangladesh Bureau Chief Julhas Alam told  Reporter.

“I talked to Imran Hossain, a team member of Everest Academy who provided technical support to Becky during her venture. He confirmed me that Becky crossed the channel successfully taking four hours and forty-five minutes,” he added.

Becky, AP’s Asia Producer, is the first British citizen to cross the Bangla Channel when Bangladeshi swimmer Brojen Das swam the English Channel as the first Asian in in 1958.

Musa Ibrahim, the country’s first conqueror of the Himalayas, was with her and attempted to cross the channel.

“I’m very excited. She made it. This is just amazing,” Julhas quoted Musa as saying immediately after she touched the finishing line.

“So, very proud to say I’m the first brit to swim the Bangla Channel!
4 hours and 45 mins for the 16km between Teknaf and St Martins. It was hard work,” said Becky.

“I must say I was rather happy when my feet touched terra ferma. Not just because it was over but also proud of my achievement in such a beautiful country. Thank you so much to all my support team today,” she added.

Earlier at a press conference in the city on Thursday, she said she was going to swim the channel to raise awareness of the huge issue of drowning in Bangladesh as around 50 children die a day from drowning here while it is only 15 in a year in the UK.

Her brave adventure was also meant for raising funds for Centre for Injury Prevention and Research, Bangladesh (CIPRB) which has long been working here to help keep children safe around water.

Becky also said she will work for making Bangla Channel popular in the UK as people there now know very little about it.