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A group undertake four-day challenge in the highlands to raise money for military charities


By Imogen James

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The rowing team from Devon.
The rowing team from Devon.

A GROUP of rowers embarked on a four-day challenge in a bid to raise vital funds for leading military charities, Poppyscotland and Royal British Legion.

From September 24-27, a team from River Teign Rowing Club in Devon rowed, cycled, and walked hundreds of miles in the Highlands.

So far they have raised more than £2000.

The crew, tackled the Caledonian Canal, which runs for 60 miles, and connects Fort William and Inverness. This took three days to complete, with a spokesman saying: “Loch Ness was absolutely incredible and both crews absolutely smashed it!”

The team then cycled 100km around Loch Ness and trekked up Ben Nevis on a very rainy final day.

Rower Dave Johnson, from Devon, said: “We’re an eclectic team of rowers that enjoy undergoing physically demanding challenges, and being able to raise money for a good cause makes it even better.

“Due to current travel restrictions and that several of our team members have Scottish roots, the Caledonian Canal is the perfect base for our challenge.

“Doing it in September means we faced more challenges due to the weather and daylight conditions, but that did not stop us.

“Some of our team members have connections to the armed forces, and given it’s also the 100th anniversary of the Poppy Appeal, there was no doubt in our minds that for this challenge we’d raise funds for Poppyscotland and the Royal British Legion.

“The support these two organisations provide to our ex-service men and women is vital and provides a much-needed lifeline to those who have sacrificed so much for us.”

Gordon Michie, head of fundraising and learning at Poppyscotland, said: “The Covid-19 pandemic halted all our major fundraising events, yet we have continued to provide uninterrupted support to the armed forces community and their families.

“Our work relies on supporters like the River Teign Rowing Club, who not only help raise the crucial funds we need, but also champion our mission that those who have served or are still serving are deserving of our support to live life fully without disadvantage after service.

The team before they tackled Ben Nevis on a rainy day.
The team before they tackled Ben Nevis on a rainy day.

“I want to send my utmost thanks to the crew for taking on this challenge, and on behalf of the whole Poppyscotland team, we wish them all the best.”

Poppyscotland provides support in areas including mental health, employment, and housing.

The Royal British Legion provides financial, social and emotional support.

For more information, visit poppyscotland.org.uk/TeignCaledonianChallenge


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