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From politics to pontoons as minister tries sailing

by RYA Cymru-Wales 20 May 16:15 BST

Welsh Government minister Lord Dafydd Ellis Thomas has helped to Push The Boat Out in Wales, with the chance to go sailing during a lunch break in Cardiff Bay.

The deputy minister for culture, sport and tourism and helped launch Adventure Smart UK in Cardiff Bay, building nationally on the co-operation of adventure sports in Wales.

He also took the opportunity to go sailing in Cardiff Bay a part of the Push The Boat Out campaign which is offering opportunities for people to try sailing all around Wales during the month of May.

"We could have done with a little more wind, but it was lovely to be able to see the Bay used this way for recreation and to encourage people to do it," he said.

"I am still a trail runner so I usually run round the Bay rather than sail round it, but that was a lovely feeling.

"This is an ideal place as a leisure area, but it is also an ideal place to work. To have the Senedd building here belonging to the National Assembly and to be able to enjoy a lunchtime sail like this has been lovely."

RYA Cymru Wales national development officer Ruth Iliffe said, "It was nice to be able to give the minister a chance to join Push The Boat Out and enjoy a bit of sailing in Cardiff Bay.

"We have seen hundreds of people all round Wales trying sailing, or returning to the life-long sport, as clubs and centres have thrown open their doors as part of Push The Boat Out.

"RYA Cymru Wales are also involved in Adventure Smart Wales, we fully support the messages of safety and co-operation."

Lord Ellis Thomas was also delighted to push the messages that sailing can be a positive benefit, having tried the sport when he was younger.

"Sailing is extremely important throughout Wales and of course the message with Adventure Smart is continual safety whether it's on the mountains of Snowdonia or whether it's on the coast," he said.

"The link with the Royal National Lifeboat Institution and all the other adventure bodies here today is brilliant.

"I did a bit of sailing Bala lake when I was young, but it was very windy there so I did not stick at it.

"The Volvo Ocean Race was a great event here and of course there is still connections with sailing, I am looking forward to seeing sailor Bleddyn Mon after his next great trip to hear about the development of his career.

"It is very special to encourage young people in Wales taking up physical activity, whatever it may be, and that activity taking place in this wonderful environment."

Push The Boat Out is a national participation campaign which aims to get more people sailing, windsurfing, having fun and getting active outdoors, with PTBO open days providing visitors with an opportunity to get out on-the-water and to find out more about their local club or training centre Getting active outdoors has been proven to positively impact physical and mental health. An escape from modern day life, getting out on-the-water is something the whole family can benefit from.

Find out more about the Push the Boat Out campaign and events near you at rya.org.uk/ptbo.

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