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Thousands brave icy waters for New Year's plunge

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Thousands brave icy waters for New Year's plunge

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It was certainly a fresh start to 2018 for some.

Braving temperatures of seven degrees Celsius, revellers in the Netherlands took part in a New Year’s Day plunge into the North Sea. The annual event has been taking place since the 1960s and is now marked by thousands across the country.

A similar sight could be seen on the French side of the English Channel, where hundreds – many in fancy dress – were rewarded for their bravery with a hot bowl of classic French onion soup.

A smaller group of around 20 participants took part in a jump into the sea in Estonia.

Coney Island’s Polar Bear Club came out in force in weather perhaps better-suited to their furry namesakes. With temperatures hovering around minus eight degrees Celsius, hundreds jumped into the Atlantic Ocean to raise money for charity.

Warmer, although still chilly, weather greeted four men who dived into Rome’s Tiber river. The yearly event has taken place without interruption since 1946.