Following a introduction at October’s MA2020’s Business Breakfast; Innovation Nottinghamshire, a family run business that runs projects to create new business and career opportunities across the county, have been announced as the official boat sponsors for an amazing trans-Atlantic rowing project.

The ‘Innovation Nottinghamshire Memory Boat’ was officially named at a ceremony at Kelham Hall in Nottinghamshire on Saturday 11 November.

The Oar Blimey Atlantic Challenge will see two Nottinghamshire men rowing unsupported across the Atlantic Ocean to raise funds and awareness for two Nottinghamshire dementia projects.

George Nelson and his brother-in-law Russell Davis will be setting off from Portugal in the ‘Innovation Nottinghamshire Memory Boat’ on 1 December. Rowing in two-hour shifts, 24 hours a day, they plan to end their amazing journey in Sint Maarten in the Caribbean by late February.

George said, “The common link between people living with dementia and rowing across the Atlantic Ocean is that at times, the physical and mental strain will push us to our absolute limits. Because of this our Atlantic Challenge 2023 is totally dedicated to people who live with dementia in their lives.”

At 6.7 metres long and 1.6 metres wide, the ‘Innovation Nottinghamshire Memory Boat’ will be home for the two men and all their equipment, food and supplies as they aim to keep the boat moving continuously every day for the three-month journey.

As George said, “the row is totally unsupported, so we need to carry all our food for the whole journey, so for the first month we’ll actually be sleeping on our packs of dehydrated food until we’ve eaten enough to actually lie on the cabin floor”.

Nick Mellors, the Founder of Innovation Nottinghamshire, explained, “Like many families across the country, we’ve also seen first-hand the sad impact of dementia on our loved ones. But it was George and Russ’s vision to build on Vicki McClure’s Dementia Choir initiative and Ladybrook Enterprises’ pioneering work with ’Help at Hand’ in Mansfield to also showcase the innovation and creativity of our county that really chimes with our vision at Innovation Nottinghamshire”.

“Inspired by George and Russ’s amazing project we’re delighted to be supporting their Atlantic Challenge, and we’d encourage everyone to follow their progress and, if possible, make a donation through the Oar Blimey website and their Facebook, X and Instagram social media channels”. “They are doing a truly impressive thing that will have make a difference”.

Click to follow their journey or donate

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