Swim marathon-man Len Phoenix is congratulated by Duncan Goodhew after 25th Swimathon in Stradbroke

A 65-year-old swimmer who was diagnosed with an uneven heartbeat has sensationally completed his 25th Swimathon in a row - and matched a time he set 19 years ago.

Len Phoenix, a swimming coach at Stradbroke Swim and Fitness Centre, swam five kilometres in 1 hour and 24 minutes - beating his target time, and matching his 1995 effort.

There was also visit from Swimathon president, and Olympic gold medallist Duncan Goodhew, presenting Mr Phoenix with a medal in recognition of his record breaking swim.

Mr Goodhew, who won his gold at the 1980 Olympics in Moscow, also hosted a training session at the pool.

“For me personally it has been an amazing Swimathon,” said Mr Phoenix.

“The recognition from Duncan Goodhew of my 25 Swimathons kicked it off big style.

“I got a much better time than I thought I was going to get,” he added.

Mr Phoenix said he hopes to make it 26 in a row next year, adding: “Why give up a good habit?”

Over the past 25 years Len has won fastest UK swimmer in his age group on three occasions, has accumulated 125,000 metres of Swimathon and trained approximately 2.47 million metres for this event.

Mr Phoenix was one of 111 swimmers, all taking part in the Swimathon to raise money for Sport Relief.

Maria Smith, who helped Mr Phoenix organise the event, competed in her 18th Swimathon, and, with a time of 1 hour 24 minutes, was the fastest female at Stradbroke.

There was also a standing ovation at the event for Samuel Crisp who, despite having learning difficulties and ADHD, completed a 1.5 km swim, set by his swimming teacher Moira Towler.