Comedian Peter Kay launched Lancashire’s first wheelchair accessible wheelyboat at outdoor activity charity the Anderton Centre, which is part of the University of Bolton Group.
The 48-year-old comic writer and actor was guest of honour to cut the ribbon on the state of the art craft which allows disabled adults and children to enjoy sailing and water sports.
Peter said he was thrilled to be presented with a T-shirt by Anderton Centre Chief Executive Officer David Germain, which was marked ‘honorary instructor’.
He said: “It’s very lovely to be here today. I’m honoured to be asked to launch this fantastic wheelyboat, which I hope gives a lot of people a lot of pleasure and happiness out on the water.
“The Anderton Centre is a fantastic place and I love coming here, the people are really nice.
“I have been here with my children and they love it. It’s a hidden gem in Bolton, a lovely place.”
David thanked Peter and the VIP guests, including Chorley MP and Speaker of the House of Commons Sir Lindsay Hoyle, at the launch at Lower Rivington Reservoir: “This wheelyboat will improve health, wellbeing, life chances and broaden horizons for all of its users.
“It will be able to set challenges, provide thrills, adventure excitement and help forge lifelong friendships and relationships.”
The fully accessible Coulam Wheelyboat V17 powerboat removes the barriers to water-based activities, enabling disabled people to participate alongside and on equal terms with their able-bodied counterparts.
David said that the wheelyboat would have not been possible without the support of a number of Grant Funders, including:
Bruce Wake Trust
Peter Harrison Foundation
Duchy of Lancashire Benevolent Fund
RYA Sailability Investment Fund
Mather Family Trust
Arnold Clarke Charitable Foundation
Bernard Sunley Foundation
Aviva Community Fund
The Anderton Centre Paddle Sports Club
Lancashire Outdoor Activities Initiative
The Wheelyboat Trust
The Anderton Centre is operated by registered charity Lancashire Outdoor Activities Initiative, an organisation with an objective of developing positive use of the outdoors.