Pair will return to paddle their canoe

TWO men have raised £5,000 for Help for Heroes in a canoe trek.

Bill Bell and Howard Jenkins were hoping to paddle 150 miles along the Caledonian Canal in Scotland.

They were planning to paddle between Fort William and Inverness and back again.

But the poor weather and high waves prevented Bill and Howard, of Clover Road, Market Deeping, from completing the return trek.

They have vowed to return to complete the challenge in September and will be modifying the canoe to prepare for the big waves seen along the canal.

Bill is the uncle of Pte Luke Morrison, who was wounded by a landmine while on patrol in Afghanistan in February and wanted to do something for charity after being inspired by Luke and his friends. Generous Mercury readers raised more than £700 in March to buy an iPad 2 for Luke.

They started the trek on Friday last week and finished on Monday.

Bill, 54, of Conduit Road, Stamford, said: “We were gutted that we couldn’t get back.

“It was probably the hardest thing we had to do just to stay afloat.

“We have learned lessons for when we go back next time.”

The pair plan to raise £25,000 in a year.