West Wittering's Major Mick launches home-made boat with Ben Fogle for new 100-mile challenge
A retired army major, who raised more than £40,000 for charity by rowing 100 miles along Chichester canal, is taking the water again - this time with celebrity backing.
Major Mick Stanley launched his new boat, the Tintanic II, from Phyllis Court on the Thames on Thursday (May 28).
The 80-year-old retired army major from West Wittering was joined by writer and broadcaster Ben Fogle who helped him launch the boat and even took it out for a spin.
Mick said: "It was very exciting and a very happy day. It was beautiful weather and Ben turned up and was professional and charming as he always is.
"We had a great day. It was a question of of launching the boat and we did that and both went out for a bit of a row.
"Ben was quite impressed with my work I think. It was very generous of him to come and lend his support to the charity
Mick will be rowing 100 miles in the Tintanic II, in a follow-up expedition to one he did on Chichester canal last year.
Ben Fogle said: "I was so moved by Major Nicks first heroic effort in Tintanic.
"As a Waterman myself, I admire anyone who takes to the water, particularly in a homemade craft. I’m delighted to join Major Mick as he begins his second expedition in Tintanic II in aid of Alzheimer’s. I look forward to being outpaddled by the Major."
Mick added: "I am feeling very excited and I'm looking forward to seeing lots of people on the tow paths again on the wonderful canals. I am especially looking forward to Scotland and I shall be going to Loch Ness.
"Last year must have given me a taste for doing it again. Not only did I raise quite a bit of money for charity but I got a great kick out of talking to people."
Mick will be raising money for Alzheimer's research UK.
"It's an efficient and well-run organisation and generate something like £20 million each year but they had a drop of some 35 per cent in their revenue so all money that can be raised will be well received."
You can make a donation here: Major Mick's 100 Mile Tintanic Adventure for Alzheimer's Research UK