Team E-Lites complete epic Round Britain voyage
The Team E-Lites powerboat crew returned home to a heroes’ welcome in Salcombe after completing their epic 2,000-mile Round Britain Charity Challenge in some of the worst weather conditions the country has seen.
During their 11-day voyage, the team handed out more than £7,000 to nine children’s hospices around the UK. A £3,500 starting donation from E-Lites, the UK’s leading electronic cigarette manufacturer, was doubled by fundraising along the way, including the auctioning of rides in the powerboat and a windfall of unexpected contributions from well wishers who greeted the crew at overnight stop-off points.
But the venture wasn’t without drama, as torrential rain, huge waves and fierce gusts conspired to blow the 38ft BananaShark powerboat off course. During the violent storm in the North East last week, the crew’s support vehicle came to the aid of an ambulance caught in flash floods and towed it to safety – before speeding off to rescue the family that had called the ambulance in the first place.
Team E-Lites leader John Cooke said: “We had some wonderful times at sea and other times where it was horrendous, but what never changed was the warmth and generosity of the people we encountered when we came ashore. The coastal towns and cities we visited offered incredible generosity and support, which really kept us going. We always knew we’d make it to the end, no matter what, but it’s nevertheless a great feeling to reach the end of this adventure, in the knowledge it has helped many hospices to keep up their great work.”
The Team E-Lites Round Britain Charity Challenge was devised after the postponement of this year’s historic RB12 land, sea and air race. The team refused to stand still, and instead launched their own phoenix mission.
Between 21st June and 1st July, Team E-Lites set off from Salcombe and visited Newlyn, Swansea, Stranraer, Troon, Inverness, Edinburgh, Hull, Chatham and Portsmouth, before retruning home on the final leg.
The charities that received donations were Little Bridge House in North Devon; Children’s Hospice South West; Ty Hafan, near Cardiff; Rebecca House Hospice, in the Isle of Man; Friends of the Beatson, in Glasgow; Children’s Hospice Association Scotland (CHAS); St Andrew’s Children’s Hospice, in Grimsby; Demelza Hospice Care for Children, in Kent; and Naomi House, in Winchester.
Navigation technology to support the Team E-Lites Round Britain Charity Challenge was provided by Raymarine, while video specialist Veho supplied cameras to film the journey.
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