Divers welcomed in the New Year with their traditional chilly dip in Hinksey Lake.

To cheers from local lake swimmers, Andy Pickering and John Waterhouse from the British Sub-Aqua Club's Oxford branch and Kirill Palamartchouk and David Brock from Oxford University Underwater Exploration Group plunged into the dark and icy depths.

Mr Pickering, BSAC Oxford club president, said: “The water wasn’t too chilly this year, at a temperature around 6°C and visibility at between four to five metres, unless the bottom mud had been stirred up."

Oxford Mail: BSAC New Year's Day dive in Hinksey Lake

Both pairs of divers completed around 30 minutes of dive time exploring the lake, which is up to three metres deep in places.

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As well as the aquatic life, consisting mainly of freshwater crayfish, there were the usual items of junk to be found among the weeds, including a number of bike frames and traffic cones along with bottles and buckets.

Dive manager Paul Gorse-Burton said: “Managing this event was not merely about co-ordinating logistics - it was a celebration of the fusion between experience and youthful enthusiasm.

Oxford Mail: BSAC New Year's Day dive in Hinksey Lake

"As bubbles danced to the surface amid cheers from local lake swimmers, it symbolised the shared joy of discovery."

The Oxford Scuba Diving Club, which was formed in 1956, has been holding a New Year's Day dive since the 1980s.

They moved from the Thames at Donnington Bridge to Hinksey Lake 20 years ago to be near the clubhouse and because waters can be more predictable and clearer than the Thames at this time of year.