Saturday, 27 February 2021

Canoeists take on 200km Thames paddle for charity

Canoeists take on 200km Thames paddle for charity

A GROUP of canoeists came through Henley on Tuesday while raising money for a disabled people’s charity.

The team of five were travelling more than 200km from Lechlade to Teddington Lock in aid of the Rivertime Boat Trust, which operates an adapted boat, Rivertime, on the Thames.

Two people each were in a pair of canoes and the fifth was on a paddleboard.

They set off last Friday and passed through Oxford, Abingdon, Wallingford, Goring, Reading and Shiplake before they reached Henley. They were due to finish yesterday (Thursday).

The rowers, led by skipper Lucy Herbert, have camped overnight en route.

They are either volunteers with the charity, supporters or friends who hope to raise more than £5,000 in donations and sponsorship.

The money will fund the charity’s river cruises, activities and educational programmes next year. Miss Herbert said: “We’re supporting the charity because it has been affected by coronavirus and we want to help cover the running and maintenance costs.

“It’s also about raising awareness of the trust and showing people what it does.

“We’ve had the most amazing support all the way down the river with people making signs for us, saying ‘good luck’.

“It has been interesting to see how the river changes. There were more boats and people as we came towards Henley.” Each year the trust supports disabled and disadvantaged adults, children and young people by giving them the opportunity to enjoy cruises on the Thames.

The trust was founded by Pat and Simon Davis in 2006 and Rivertime was launched at the River & Rowing Museum in Mill Meadows in June 2008.

Since then it has carried 26,000 disabled passengers and benefited from 10,000 volunteer hours.

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