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Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust celebrate the unveiling of a new yacht

by Natasha Elliott on 3 Apr 3 April 2017

Today, the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, a national organisation that supports young people in recovery from cancer, celebrated the unveiling of a new, uniquely adapted Beneteau Oceanis 45 yacht, thanks to the generous support from players of People's Postcode Lottery.

The purchase of the yacht, Caledonian Hero, was made possible after the Trust received an additional £200,000 from players of People's Postcode Lottery in 2016 on top of their long standing annual support of the Trust. The yacht will reside at the Trust's northern base in Largs Marina and will be used to further improve the experience of young people with mobility issues after treatment from Scotland and the North of England. The Trust uses the power of sailing to help young people aged 8-24 in recovery from cancer to re-engage with education, employment and society.

Dame Ellen MacArthur explained the importance of Caledonian Hero and how it will aid the Trust's drive in supporting more young people: "The long-term impact cancer treatment has on some young people means they may suffer with cognitive and mobility issues, leading to difficulty in balance and spatial awareness. The key adaptations which have been made to this yacht will enable the Trust to expand their support and will be invaluable to the experience the young people have onboard, all of which is thanks to the players of People's Postcode Lottery".

Matt Johnson, TV presenter and People's Postcode Lottery Ambassador, attended the boat launch and commented, "It's fantastic to see first-hand where the money raised from players of People's Postcode Lottery has gone. Many unique adaptations have been made to Caledonian Hero, which will enhance the experience of the young people, helping them engage with activities onboard and rediscover their confidence."

Adding to this, Frank Fletcher, CEO of the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust said, "This is a brilliant day for the Trust and one which would not have been possible without the incredible support of players of People's Postcode Lottery as well as Beneteau, the Ancasta Group, Hamble Yacht Services and so many more individuals. On behalf of the young people this enables us to support, thank you!"

Caledonian Hero will also play a special role in the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust's Round Britain 2017 project which sets off from Largs on 20th May. Caledonian Hero will chaperone the Trust's flagship yacht, Moonspray, out of the harbour as she heads off to Glasgow for the start of a four month, 2000 mile, national relay, encompassing over 60 ports and 100 young people, in celebration of achievement and potential. Locals are encouraged to join the flotilla or join on shore to wave the crew off on Saturday afternoon along with youth sailors from Largs Sailing Club.

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