THRILL seeking disabled people can take to Southampton Water on a fully accessible powerboat this week thanks to a Hampshire charity.

Following their successful, Daily Echo-backed campaign when they managed to get £65,000 raised in 44 days for a new wheelchair-friendly boat Wetwheels is returning to Southampton Boat Show.

Built specifically by Cheetah Marine and powered by twin 300 HP Suzuki engines for founder and quadriplegic sailor Geoff Holt, the vessel has many special adaptations from a standard motorboat allowing disabled sea lovers to experience the thrills of powerboating.

Those who go afloat will be able to get aboard via the side door with ramp, lock down their wheelchair and take control via the easy to use steering wheel or joystick.

Yachtsman Geoff Holt set Wetwheels up three years ago and explains how the Southampton Boat Show gives more people access to the work they do.

He said: “Every year we take more than 400 people on Wetwheels over the 10 day period of the Show; non-stop trips each day providing our disabled guests and the general public an opportunity to get out on the water.

“I think that this is what makes the Southampton Boat Show so special, the fact it is an outdoor show and it attracts people from all walks of life.

“We are extremely grateful to the British Marine Federation and Suzuki Marine who make it possible for us to attend every year and to enable so many people to get afloat.”

He added: “I can’t believe this will be our fourth year at the Southampton Boat Show, without doubt, it is the highlight of our year, not only does it signify the end of our busy summer season, but it is an opportunity to showcase our work to visitors at the Show.”

CEO of British Marine Boat Shows and supporter of Wetwheels, Howard Pridding said: “We are delighted to support Wetwheels again at this year’s Southampton Boat Show for the 4th year running.

“Results from one of our recent surveys show encouraging figures for the number of people participating in boating and watersports.

“Getting out on the water is a hugely enjoyable pastime, and by enabling our disabled visitors at the Show to have access to the water, we can demonstrate just how inclusive the British Marine industry is.”

Since their founding in 2012, Wetwheels has worked with a number of individuals and charities across the South who have seen real positive impacts of Wetwheels trips on their residents.

Wetwheels are at the Southampton Boat Show until Sunday (September 20) at the ‘Try a Boat’ exhibit, stand M036.

Disabled people wishing to book a free place on Wetwheels should email to reserve their place on a first-come, first-served basis.

Group bookings welcome.