A SOMERSET youth sailing group has secured £1,000 funding to help repair one of its safety boats.

Somerset Youth and Community Sailing Association (SYCSA), a volunteer-led charity which promotes dinghy sailing, has won the funding from housebuilding firm Persimmon Homes Severn Valley.

The funding comes as part of Persimmon’s Community Champions initiative, which sees 64 good causes across the UK being awarded up to £1,000 every month.

SYCSA - which is based at Durleigh Reservoir, Bridgwater - runs a Saturday Sailing Youth Club, where typically 30 or more young people learn to sail.

Peter Upton, of SYCSA, said: “We’re thrilled that Persimmon has selected us as a Community Champion.

“Our income has been hit hard by lockdowns and restrictions, and we’re currently operating at a level that just covers fixed costs.

“One of our safety boats, a rib, has developed a fault where the inflatable tubes are coming away from the glassfibre hull.

“This needs to be repaired or we will not be able operate at full capacity.

“This donation will allow us to buy a new lightweight aluminium hull, so that an extra 10 to 15 children can participate in sailing.”

Carly Spear, sales director at Persimmon, said: “We are delighted to be able to support SYCSA.

“Covid-19 has caused a multitude of problems, including a lack of regular funding for some well-established and appreciated clubs.

“We’re proud to be able to support groups and people in the areas in which we are working.”