t was 4am on Thursday when Holyhead duo Andy Williams and Steve Miles headed off on their kayaks.
Destination, their twin town, Greystones.
And it would be 9pm that night before they paddled into our marina, a little rough – and wet – around the edges, but no doubt excited and delighted for having finally reached their destination.
Even if the welcoming party comprised of just Cllr Derek Mitchell and former mayor Kathleen Kelleher.
These two hardy Greystonians waited hours to make sure that Andy and Steve had someone to cheer them back onto land, their 60-mile kayak having been all part of the fundraising Irish Sea Charity Paddle 2021.
The inspiration for the trip came from Andy, his sister not having long to live due to a cerebral condition and his father having rowed across the Irish Sea from Holyhead in 1972. The two beneficiaries the duo are raising funds for are both Holyhead-based – Mencap Mon (for people with disabilities) and the Alaw Ward Cancer Unit in Bangor Hospital.
Young Mitchell commented, “I was delighted that the Holyhead kayakers had a smooth trip over. It’s a remarkable achievement, especially considering the series of postponements that they had to endure before finally making the journey…”
Once they took on some supplies, the lads packed up their kayaks on their support boat, Late Starter – captained by Mick Thorne and crewed by Sue James – and then our Welsh visitors headed on back home.
With a target of €10,000, Andy and Steve have so far raised €7,000. You can throw a few shekels into the hat here.
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