A NORTH Berwick woman is swimming five miles in her garden to help feed the animals at Edinburgh Zoo during the coronavirus lockdown period.

Jane McMenemy, 40, will attempt the feat tomorrow (Friday) in the front garden of her house on Lady Jane Gardens.

She is aiming to swim five miles in her 10ft-long paddling pool, while attached to a harness.

The pool is 75cm deep, which Jane says is “just enough” space to complete the challenge.

The mum-of-two is a keen swimmer and has taken part in other charity swimming challenges, including swimming round Lake Windermere in the Lake District a few years ago.

She said: “Swimming is something I have always done, it’s a massive passion of mine.

“We bought a paddling pool as a present for my 40th birthday.

“I saw that someone tagged me in a post on social media of someone swimming while attached to a belt and I thought ‘I can do that’.”

Jane will be swimming ‘on the spot’, held in place by a resistance band attached to a belt round her waist.

She knows she can swim one mile in 30 minutes so will likely be swimming for about three hours.

On why she decided to raise money for Edinburgh Zoo, Jane, who is a co-owner and partner in a cleaning business, said: “I have a friend who used to work in the zoo.

“She always talked about it and I love animals.

“I noticed the zoo had their live cameras going so I’ve been watching them lots, I love the pandas.

“I read that they are struggling because they aren’t government funded and rely on the zoo being open. So I thought that I could do a swim for them.

“They need £20,000 a week to feed the animals.

“I’ve been in touch with the zoo and they have put it up on their Facebook page and there have been a few donations through that from anonymous people. ”

Training has so far consisted of a one-mile swim every lunchtime to get used to the feeling of swimming with a resistance band as “it is not the usual way to swim” and “you have to work against the band”, according to Jane.

Her two sons, Hamish, eight, and Magnus, six, have also been loving the pool and are in it every day.

She added: “We’ve got numerous pool parties planned with the kids once lockdown is over.”

Jane’s husband, 40-year-old Scott, is hoping to livestream the swim, which starts at 10am tomorrow.

A link to watch the livestream will be available on the JustGiving page.

Jane said: “With big swims it’s all logistics and making sure you have rescue boats, so it can be quite stressful.

“With this one I am not in the sea but I am still a wee bit nervous, I haven’t swam five miles in a wee while. I think on the day it will be fine.

“It’s actually a lot harder to swim with a resistance band; I’m using muscles I haven’t used before.

“I am still looking forward to it.”

Donations can be made at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/edinburghzoodonations