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Portsmouth pupils to get on the water, thanks to Wightlink’s support for the Andrew Simpson Foundation.

Wightlink has teamed up with the Andrew Simpson Foundation’s Watersports Centre in Langstone Harbour to provide 500 young people aged 12 and 13 years from Portsmouth schools with the opportunity to experience sailing for themselves.

The Portsmouth-based ferry company is supporting the charity’s Discover Sailing programme. It encourages young people in the city to get active on the water and benefit from everything sailing has to offer including confidence building, teamwork, an increased sense of wellbeing, as well as learning a new skill.

Andrew Simpson Foundation Chief Executive, Richard Percy says: “The Andrew Simpson Foundation’s primary mission is to increase participation in sailing and improve the lives of young people, by enabling them to experience all the benefits that sailing brings.”

Our Discover Sailing programme plays a key part in this as it introduces sailing as a sport to a large number of young people. We are thrilled to be partnering with Wightlink to deliver this programme at the Andrew Simpson Watersports Centre on the Eastern road in Portsmouth. After completing a Discover Sailing session all young people will be offered the opportunity to continue sailing regularly through our affordable Sailing Club.”

“As a keen sailor myself, I know the excitement and exhilaration of sailing, we are delighted to support Richard Percy and his team in their efforts to introduce children to the sport,” says Wightlink Chief Executive Keith Greenfield. “Learning to sail gives them a valuable skill that might even lead to valuable career opportunities.”

The Andrew Simpson Foundation opened the Andrew Simpson Watersports Centre in November 2017 as a not-for-profit watersports centre. Through its Charitable Sailing Programmes, the Andrew Simpson Foundation aims to use the facility to offer the community of Portsmouth affordable opportunities to learn to sail and experience watersports and outdoor adventure activities, as well as offer inclusive routes to regular participation.

Any Portsmouth schools that are interested in taking part in the Wightlink-supported Discover Sailing programme should contact the Andrew Simpson Watersports Centre on 023 9266 3873 or email ben@aswc.co.uk.