A North Wales teenager is looking forward to “an opportunity of a life time” when she sets sail from Cardiff to London.
Next week, Cadet Corporal Rhian Tyne from Pwllheli will be on board the Lord Nelson ship as it embarks on the last leg of the Lord Dannatt Round Britain Challenge – a 40 day voyage to all four of the United Kingdom’s capitals.
The 16-year-old member of Clwyd and Gwynedd Army Cadet Force (ACF) will be alongside 23 other members of the cadet organisations, sharing sailing responsibilities such as climbing masts and setting sails. The opportunity has been sponsored by Alan Peterson, Honorary Colonel Army Cadets Wales.
The Jubilee Sailing Trust is a world leader in social inclusion and there will also be 12 injured Service personnel on the adventure, aboard a purpose built tall ship to integrate physically disabled people with non-disabled people.
Rhian said: “It appealed to me because it’s different and the fact that it’s something very new. It’s an opportunity of a life time. I’m really excited about the whole trip and the way it’s put together.
“I don’t have any experience on the water, it’s going to be a completely different experience for me but there’s nothing like the feeling of being able to help someone achieve something.
“I’m starting college in September and this is a great way to spend my summer holidays. We’re on the ship for 10 days and I’m looking forward to the ceremonies in Cardiff and London, too.”
Also chosen to represent young people for Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Gwynedd in 2018, the creative cadet had to find time to part-fund her inclusion on the voyage and has used her organisational skills to create her own fundraising opportunities.
Rhian said: “I had to write a personal statement as to why I thought I deserved a place on the trip and I had to plan how I was going to raise the money to get the funds that I needed.
“I think the minimum we had to fundraise was £695, so I set myself a target of £2000, which I’ve achieved and surpassed. I organised a fundraising event in January with some local musicians and performers. I sold tickets for it and I was really happy with the support.”
Rhian has been a member of the Army Cadet Force for nearly three years and has immersed herself in all sorts of activities, including; first aid, remembrance services and athletics. Thankful for the skills and qualifications gained through the ACF, Rhian is also grateful for the doors it continues to open.
She said: “The ACF have been very supportive and helped spread the word around for me. They’ve done lots of little things, especially on social media and the Army Cadet Force’s Facebook page to raise awareness of what I’m doing.
“We had a talk about it when we were away with cadets and when I came home, I thought it was exactly what I wanted to do. This is what it’s all about.”
CLICK HERE to keep up to date with the Lord Nelson’s and track its progress. The on-board transponder transmits their position, speed and course approximately every 20 minutes.
Image: Jubilee Sailing Trust