EIGHT ladies from Truro River Rowing Club are taking on the challenge of rowing the 35km Great London River Race on Saturday, September 16.

The crew with a combined age of 450 and an average age of 56, will be rowing a traditional wooden Cornish gig and are raising money for Cornwall's Sowenna Charity which provides mental health support for young people aged 13-18.

The crew is also fundraising towards a new gig to help the club grow and enable more people, young and old, to enjoy this traditional Cornish sport. The Great River Race has over 300 boats and 2,500 people taking part in a wide range of craft from the UK, and all over the world.

The course starts in Millwall passing under Tower Bridge, in front of The Houses of Parliament and the London Eye before finishing near Richmond. The crew includes local teachers, a retired eye surgeon, hospital staff, and a Falmouth Coastguard, and together they have completed over 300km of training in the last eight weeks rowing from Loe Beach across Falmouth Bay and up the river Fal to Malpas in all weathers.

Nita Owers, one of the crew, is looking forward to the challenge and said: "Rowing through the centre of London will definitely be a change from Falmouth Bay but we are excited to be rowing a Cornish gig and hope all the training keeps us going for the 35km.

"Sowenna is a vital centre for adolescent mental health care here in Cornwall and is a cause which is really important to us all. The club is keen to partner with a local business or individual to name the new gig which was built locally."

If you would like to donate to the Sowenna Charity, you can do so by visiting: www.justgiving.com/page/truro-river-rowing-ladies-vetssupervets

If you would like to help fundraise for the new gig: www.gofund.me/f13a5030 or contact Tamsyn Harris on tamsynharris@hotmail.com.