Seahouses man to paddle length of Britain for charity

Army veteran Dan Smith has launched a campaign ahead of a gruelling challenge where he'll kayak the length of Great Britain in a bid to raise £25,000 for The Royal British Legion.

Friday, 25th May 2018, 08:50 am
Updated Wednesday, 23rd May 2018, 10:01 am
Dan Smith prepares for his long-distance kayaking challenge to raise funds for the Royal British Legion.

The father-of-two, from Seahouses, served in the British Army for 14 years, completing military tours of Afghanistan and Northern Ireland.

To mark 100 years since the end of the First World War, Dan is completing a 60-day challenge by kayaking 900 miles.

He will start his mission at Skerray Bay in the Scottish Highlands in September. It is the first time anyone has attempted to kayak inland the full length of Great Britain.

All funds raised through the challenge, which Dan has dubbed the Paddle of Britain, will be donated to the Legion

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Dan said: “Being part of the British Army is something I am immensely proud of, it helped me become the person I am today. The Paddle of Britain is one of the biggest challenges I’ve ever faced but it is important to remember those who fought for our country.

“It is going to be tough. I am obviously going to have to overcome obstacles on the way and I’m prepared to kayak through all weathers. I’ll find it difficult to be away from my wife and two children for so long, but military personnel are away from their families for months at a time and it’s one of the hardest parts of the job.”

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Dan will be camping by night and kayaking through iconic landmarks including Lake Windemere, the Manchester canals and the River Thames, before completing his challenge in Littlehampton, West Sussex.

Claire Rowcliffe, director of fund-raising at The Royal British Legion, added: “We are delighted that Dan is completing this challenge to raise money for the Legion, which will help us to continue providing vital support to veterans, serving personnel and their families.

“It is poignant that Dan is taking on this challenge this year, as we remember the struggles of all those who lived through the First World War. We wish Dan the very best of luck with his Paddle of Britain.”