Wheelchair-friendly powerboat launches in Wareham

Wheelchair-friendly powerboat launches in Wareham

Published by The Wessex FM News Team at 7:01am 19th August 2019.

The accessible 'Wheelyboat' will provide training for disabled people in Dorset.

National charity The Wheelyboat Trust has supplied the boat to Wareham Boat Hire so that disabled users can complete RYA (Royal Yachting Association) qualifications.

The qualifications will enable users will to operate the V17 Wheelyboat themselves, which the charity says is a freedom usually only afforded to able-bodied sailors.

The Powerboat Level 1 and 2 qualifications can also lead to becoming qualified skippers and instructors.

Matt Jones director of Wareham Boat Hire said:

“The design of the V17 accessible Wheelyboat is second to none. The roll-on, roll-off access and drive-from-wheelchair helm is exactly what we have been looking for to provide inclusive access to the water, bringing accessibility to the heart of Wareham.

"Our current Wheelyboat, the Mk III, is one of the most used throughout the UK, and we cannot wait to introduce users to the Coulam Wheelyboat V17 and the Powerability programme.

"Seeing a community, and disabled holidaymakers truly benefit both physically and mentally from this vessel will be so rewarding and we are very excited to add the V17 to our fleet and expand the services we offer to disabled people here in Dorset.”  

The new Wheelyboat will also enable Wareham Boat Hire to extend its organised pleasure trips downstream into Poole Harbour.  As the river widens into the harbour, its character and scenery changes offering new sightseeing and wildlife-watching opportunities. The speed restriction ends and the V17’s larger outboard provides a powerboating experience for the more adventurous.

You can find out more and book a place on the Wheelyboat at Wareham here.