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DESPITE the 71knts wind experienced on the Isle of Wight, a group of sailors from Sussex gathered at Seaview Yacht Club to raise £4,000 for blood cancer charity Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research and The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust, a charity that supports young people recovering from cancer through sailing.

The ‘All hands on Deck’ regatta was to be held at Seaview Yacht Club on Friday to raise money for the two charities, although it became clear the day before that strong winds were expected and this was confirmed when it was decided that it would not be safe to launch the Mermaid fleet.

Thanks to the great hospitality of the Seaview Yacht Club and the indomitable spirit of the assembled sailors the day went ahead with quizzes and games ashore. The highlight of the day for the group was meeting Dame Ellen MacArthur who originally intended to launch the day and fire the starting gun. Ellen came along to meet everyone and talk about some of her sailing adventures and the work of her Trust, and Ben Sykes from Lymphoma and Leukaemia Research then spoke about their research projects.

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The day finished with a silent auction which had a number of fantastic prizes donated by The Santon Group and Ellen MacArthur.  Despite the cancellation of the Regatta the day raised over £4,000 for the two charities.

Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research is the only UK charity solely dedicated to research into blood cancers, including leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma, to make a difference to the lives of the 30,000 people diagnosed every year with a blood cancer.

Clive Wilding, one of the ‘All hands on Deck Regatta’ team, said:  “We are delighted that a day that began with the disappointment of cancelling the Regatta proved to be so successful in raising £4,000 to support the work of these two fantastic charities. All the sailors were in good spirits and were thrilled to meet Ellen MacArthur. The Seaview Yacht Club have looked after us wonderfully and have kindly offered us another Regatta date on 13th September”

The Sussex Sailors are looking forward to 13th September and hope to raise as much as possible for Angus Rowland FMN [email protected] & Lymphoma Research and The Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust.

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