Woodbridge: Youngsters stunned by Olympic champion’s visit to rowing club

Daley Thompson showed his support for fundraisers at Deben Rowing Club, in Woodbridge

Daley Thompson showed his support for fundraisers at Deben Rowing Club, in Woodbridge - Credit: Archant

A surprise visit by an Olympic hero gave youngsters a boost as they took on a fundraising challenge.

Olympic decathlon champion Daley Thompson dropped by Deben Rowing Club in Woodbridge to encourage some 20 teenagers as they rowed the 1,347km distance from Land’s End to John o’ Groats, aided by 35 adult volunteers.

The athlete was visiting Suffolk and enjoying Maritime Woodbridge when he spotted activities at the club. He was so impressed by the juniors that he returned the next day.

Club member Catherine Larner said there was great excitement among members at the surprise visit, and that about £3,000 was raised in the weekend’s activities.

As well as the sponsored row, the club hosted a barbecue, cake stall and raffle. Funds will be used for a new racing boat for the juniors – half paid for with a Rowing Foundation grant – and for a crew boat for the club.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter