Schoolgirl completes solo island charity sail

Heather Aitken
Heather Aitken

HIGH winds and big waves were no match for schoolgirl Heather Aitken who sailed around the Isle of Wight to raise funds for a charity trip to Africa.

The 15-year-old from Warsash sailed her Laser dingy single-handed 60 miles in challenging conditions around the island and took her 11 hours and 5 mins.

Heather said: ‘Sailing in two metre waves when your boat is only four meters is tough and it was like that for the longest stretch around the island.’ 

‘But sailing from sunrise then getting back to Warsash Sailing Club just as the sun was setting - that was incredible.’

Heather is raising money for her trip to Africa next year where she will be working with a World Challenge on a local community project in Swaziland.

She is part of a group of volunteers from Brookfield Community School and she and her friends need to raise £2850 to travel to Africa next summer and currently she has raised nearly £2,000.

Heather added: ‘I want to say a big thank you to everyone who supported and sponsored me.

‘When I crossed the finishing line at Yarmouth there was a brilliant crowd of people cheering me and in and it made the difference.’

To donate visit justgiving.com/crowdfunding/heatherswaziland