Taunton van centre supports oarsome charity voyage

A Volkswagen van centre in Taunton has been thanked for its support by a team of charity rowers who raised over £50,000 after completing an epic voyage.

The rowing quartet, who also claimed the world record for the first four-man unsupported row across the Indian Ocean, generated funds for the Mark Evison Foundation, Access Sport, Compassion UK and the Light Dragoons Charitable Trust.

After finishing the 3,398 nautical mile challenge in 75 days, the team thanked all supporters, including Taunton Van Centre, part of Silver Street Automotive, which provided transportation for the gruelling training programme and funds for the expedition.

The team, which consisted of Capt James Kayll, Tom Kelly and brothers, Oliver and Ed Wells, rowed in two-hour shifts for 24 hours a day from Western Australia to Mauritius.

Speaking of the challenge, Oliver Wells said: “It took two years to train and prepare for this rowing challenge and Taunton Van Centre has supported us right from the start.
“It is with thanks to them and all our sponsors that we have been able to turn this charity rowing challenge into a reality. We would like to say a big thanks to everyone involved.”

Rob Small, sales manager from Taunton Van Centre, which supplies Volkswagen commercial vehicles across the south west, was delighted to support the charity crossing, which has only ever been achieved by 11 other rowing boats.

He said: “Everyone at the van centre is thrilled to hear news of their safe crossing. The Mark Evison Foundation was set up in memory of a close friend who was killed in action while in Afghanistan.

“We were more than happy to support such an impressive feat and worthy cause.”