To start with those individuals it isn't possible to thank each in person became there have been so many but our sincere thanks are given to all who have gone to the trouble to either give us cash or to log on to the Just Giving page at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/andrew-lambert9
Then, of course, there have been the companies who have supported the challenge and made the car and the boat look very special into the bargain.
The Gofer's Support car pictured on the day the vinyls were fitted
Dacre, Son & Hartley
Master Plan Systems
Acorn Villas Dental Practice
Airedale Cooling Systems
The Pentelow Practice
The Alternative Board
Tax Assist Accountants
The Little Tea House
Maureen Williams School of Dance
The Black Hat
The other organisation that has been instrumental in both the raising of funds and raising the event's awareness has been the Masons' West Yorkshire Province, with various fundraising initiatives and also the Masonic quarterly magazine and website publicising the journey. So far, in excess of £2,000 has been raised through Masonic avenues for the charity and our thanks are extended to them for their considerable efforts on behalf of our venture and the charity. This fundraising has also included members' wives who presented a cheque to Caroline of the charity at the Woolly Sheep Inn event on 12th July.
It would be remiss if we also didn't thank Alan Strachan of Logo Promotional Merchandise who kindly provided the shirts, jackets and base ball caps, thanks Alan, our "corporate" look helped us to stand out with the people we met along the way. (We also had good use of those jackets on our third day as we paddled through rain of Biblical proportions).
The corporate look provided by Logo Promotional Merchandise
Then of course we must not forget the places en route who were kind enough to support us by allowing us to stay with them. Thanks to the following:
The Red Lion, Newburgh
The Holiday Inn Express, Burnley
The Woolly Sheep Inn, Skipton
The Holiday Inn Express, Leeds Armouries
The Wheldale Hotel, Castleford
Particular thanks are due to the Starboard Hotels Group that runs the two Holiday Inns for they also brought on board their PR company, Flex Media, to help raise the profile of our trip and to secure important media exposure.
A big thanks is also due to Andy Goodall, manager at the Woolly Sheep Inn and to Timothy Taylors brewery for hosting the brilliant evening on 12th July with the beer and food match event where over £400 was raised, many thanks; I am sure people who were there for the amazing food & beer will certainly be returning.
Andy Goodall from the Timothy Taylor Woolly Sheep Inn at the event 12th July
The other thanks are to those folk who provided us with what we experienced as random acts of kindness:
The Marina Cafe at White Bear Marina for the free tea and cakes.
Angie and partner on day 6 for giving the boat a lift down Bulholme Lock.
The family just before we finished when they shouted us over to give us a donation.
The Canal and River Trust worker on day 7 for opening the cabin at Pollington to allow us to eat lunch in comfort - he didn't need to do that, it was appreciated, thanks.
One of our greatest thanks must go to Tim and Bernie whose impromptu arrival boosted us just at a time when our spirits were flagging whilst we made our way from Shipley to Leeds. They negotiated all the locks for us and did the donkey-work in transferring the boat from the canal to the Aire & Calder in Leeds. They helped turn a day that could have been a disastrous flop into a massive success.
Tim and Bernie, whose help on day 5 was immeasurable
Our fifth day was also notable for the help of Rob and Vicky at the Marina Cafe at Apperley Bridge, their hospitality was fantastic, especially as they stayed open just to ply us with cups of tea and chilled Mars Bars (and they also were happy to take a CSY collection-tin and then made a donation themselves). Thanks for just being really nice people.
We are also grateful for the press coverage we have received over the previous months with particular thanks to Stuart Thompson, reporter at the Craven Herald. Their coverage has helped raise the profile of the event and hopefully of the work of the charity.
Finally, last but by no means least, out thanks to Caroline Lewis of Cancer Support Yorkshire whose infectious enthusiasm is enough to keep anyone spurred on (we were very glad to have her with us on that very hard day from Skipton to Leeds). Without Caroline there probably wouldn't have been a challenge in the first place.
Come on....no one can be that excited!
On a personal note, I must thank my team members; David for his offer to act as support, without which we would have struggled; Andrew for suggesting he went with me after I had had the idea back in late 2016. Originally a solo plan it would have been very much more difficult alone. It also wouldn't have been anything like as much fun and the poems would have been a lot less. Also, I feel that have learned a little about cricket...
We had a great times and have left ourselves with memories that will last a lifetime. Hopefully anyone reading this will have got a small taste of what it was like for us. Thanks for reading....
Here's to the next challenge..... (any ideas?)....
Thank you for your support