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A Rotary Club President Accidentally Bought A Gimp Suit For A Charity Swim

David Cavell thought he had ordered a "merman" outfit online for a charity swim. But as his daughter pointed out, he had in fact bought a full-length gimp suit.

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When Whitstable Rotary Club president David Cavell ordered a merman costume online to wear while carrying out a sponsored swim, something unexpected happened: He found he had accidentally ordered a gimp suit instead.

And it was a full gimp suit, the kind that zips up over the wearer's head like the one above. Cavell told BuzzFeed News: "I was going to have something made by the local amateur dramatic society but they were busy. So I found this merman outfit online and ordered it.

"But my daughter told me, 'That's a gimp suit'. It was a full-length latex suit that covered my whole body, including my head. I couldn't zip it up all the way."

But all was not lost: Cavell's wife, Marika, cut the suit in half and painted on some shiny scales – so he can be a merman during the swim after all.

"We burst out laughing," he said. "I said, 'What the hell's a gimp suit?' I'd never heard of one in my life. It explains some of the strange emails I have been getting."

Cavell will wear the outfit during a one-hour swim in aid of the Kent, Surrey, and Sussex Air Ambulance Trust.

As Cavell writes of the charity's workers on the Rotary Club site: "They save lives of people, irrespective of who they are. The personnel do not discriminate, or judge, they just get on with the job of saving lives.

"To do this most invaluable service they rely totally on charitable donations! Now, what can I do to help? I can swim, great but sponsored swims have been done before and, quite honestly, are very boring to watch.

"Thinking about this, I decided to do a swim with a difference, using my arms only, legs strapped together. Not bad, but still not spectator-friendly. Ahah! Let's encase my legs in a fish tail, after all, I am not using them. A little more interesting. Now I become a merman. Cannot be a mermaid, I am not shaving off my beard of 40 years, even for this!"