Boat makes sailing fun for all abilities

editorial image

The Aberdeenshire Sailing Trust held a special celebration event at the weekend to mark the arrival of a new sailing dinghy at Peterhead Sailing Club.

The new boat is suitable for wheelchair users and those with restricted mobility, giving them the chance to go sailing independently or with a friend.

The boat will even allow its users to compete against able-bodied sailors.

The Aberdeenshire Sailing Trust was delighted to secure the funding earlier this year from the Lloyds TSB Foundation for Scotland’s Henry Duncan Awards, the RYA Foundation and MHI Vestas.

Thanks to the funding, the boat was purchased and brought to Peterhead.

At last week’s launch was the Dillon family from Fraserburgh.

Craig Dillon (12) has cerebral palsy and has enjoyed sailing with the Trust over the last year.

He admitted he was very excited to be the first person to sail in the new boat.

His mum Jennifer said: “I’m so pleased that my two boys will be able to do a sport together, this is something that we can do as a family.

“It is fantastic that this boat is available here in Peterhead not just for Craig but for anyone with disabilities.”

Also at the launch was Disability Sports development officer for Aberdeenshire Council, Lisa Logie and her two sons, one of whom, has autism.

She said: “What great opportunities this boat will bring for people with disabilities for people to go sailing.

“It’s going to make sailing much more inclusive and accessible for people in the North East.”

Trust Principal, Angie Fraser, said: “We’ve been planning getting this boat for some time, and the need for it was demonstrated when Craig came sailing with us last season.

“We’re delighted that these funders have recognised this and given us their support.

“It’s amazing to have the boat finally here and to have so many more people asking about it.”