Introducing Wetwheels as Southampton International Boat Show’s official Show charity for 2018/19. Wetwheels provides fun, highly sensory activity experiences on board specially built accessible powerboats for disabled children and adults of all ages. A Wetwheels experience is not just a boat trip, but an active adventure in which participants are encouraged to take the helm and drive the boat. The experience builds confidence and improves physical and mental wellbeing. Wetwheels is the only provider of participatory boating experiences that accommodates all disabled people.
This includes the most neglected members of our communities; those with profound and complex, multiple disabilities.Wetwheels was founded by disabled yachtsman Geoff Holt MBE DL in 2012 and since then has grown to a fleet of five boats. They serve the communities of Dover, Hamble, Jersey, Portsmouth and Whitby, with ‘outreach’ trips to other coastal towns to reach more people in more locations. In 2018 Wetwheels provided exciting maritime adventures to around 6,000 people and is aiming to reach 7,000 people in 2019. A third of Wetwheels’ disabled participants had profound and complex conditions or multiple impairments.
80% of Wetwheels’ disabled participants report that they had never been on a boat before as the opportunity had not existed. With this in mind, Wetwheels has plans to launch another five boats in new locations to double the number of people they can take on the water each year.
“Wetwheels is proud and excited to be Southampton International Boat Show’s Charity of the Year in 2018-19. Together we can help many thousands more disabled people experience the thrill of the open water: the wind in their hair, the spray on their face, and the excitement of racing across the waves”.