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Cowes Sailability Club can now offer more opportunities for people with disabilities to go sailing on the Isle of Wight following the arrival of its new sailing boat. 

Delivered just in time for the start of the 2019 sailing season, the Drascombe Longboat was purchased with funding from the National Lottery Community Fund, Little Britain Challenge Cup and Royal Yachting Association (RYA) Foundation, as well as generous donations from several individuals.

Trish Rooke, Cowes Sailability Club’s Fundraising Officer, has said:

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“We are so excited to receive our new boat, as it really will have a positive impact on the lives of many island residents who have physical disabilities, learning difficulties or debilitating medical conditions.

“This summer, we will have capacity to take more people out onto the water, so that they can enjoy exciting experiences, learn new skills and have fun.

“We are incredibly grateful to all the players of the National Lottery, competitors and supporters of the Little Britain Challenge Cup, the RYA Foundation and local people, who have together enabled us to fulfil a dream and buy this new boat.”

Cowes Sailability Club now has 2 Drascombe Longboats and will provide sailing trips for members on both vessels on Monday afternoons, commencing on 13th May. Drascombe Longboats are ideal for people with limited mobility or poor sight, as they have a large cockpit and no boom to bump heads. The vessel is also quick and easy to rig and can be both sailed and motored, allowing it to be used in most conditions.

Tony Poole, Director of the Little Britain Challenge Cup, said:

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“It is extremely pleasing to announce that our work with, and contribution to, Cowes Sailability Club has enabled the charity to procure a new sailing boat to significantly increase the work it can do to make sailing accessible to local disabled and disadvantaged children and adults.

“We are delighted to play our small part in this very worthwhile charity.”

New volunteers are always welcome at the club and can provide assistance both on the water and on the shore. Anyone seeking further information about Cowes Sailability Club should visit


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