A local sailor from Milngavie is about to undertake the voyage of a lifetime - and it’s all in aid of those less fortunate.
Catriona Macintyre-Beon joined other volunteers yesterday to sail around Rockall to raise funds for the sailing charity able2sail, based in Kip marina Inverkip, and the Ellen McArthur Trust.
Leaving from Inverkip, they will sail to Castlebay on Barra, where they will meet up with several other boats of the same class, the 50 year old Rival design by Peter Brett.
From Castlebay they sail south round Barra Head and on to Rockall, some 200 miles west. After rounding the 17m high rock in the Atlantic, they will sail back north east to Stornoway, rounding the Butt of Lewis.
After a partial crew change there, they will return to Kip, expecting to arrive back about midday on Sunday, July 17.
It’s an epic trip for sure, and what makes it all the more amazing is the fact that Catriona has only been sailing for two years!
The 45-year-old 9.7m long yacht “Contender”, owned and skippered by Geoff Crowley will sail approximately 1000 miles in the two weeks they are at sea.
They will be fundraising via the charity’s funding page on Virgin Money Giving, and are hoping to raise well in excess of £10,000.
You can track their progress on the Yellowbrick tracker website, or the able2sail website from July 4 onwards by logging on to: www.able2sail.org.uk.
Catriona told us: “I volunteer for able2sail and have agreed to take the challenge to sail from Kip Marina around Rockall to raise vitally neededfunds. This will hopefully continue to allow clients to come out sailing with us. It’s a fair challenge though, being a 1,000 mile round trip in 14 days. “
On a recent outing earlier this year, the accompanying carer to a severely autistic young lad said: “That’s the first time I’ve ever seen him smile”.
And Catriona’s day job couldn’t be further from her volunteering role in many respects.
She works as a nurse looking after babies and children who are visually impaired in the Greater Glasgow and Clyde area.
The charity able2sail is a 100 per cent volunteer managed and operated organisation, that believes all individuals should have the same opportunities regardless of whether they are able-bodied or have disabilities.
To donate log onto: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/able2sail.