By Nigel Slater 27/04 Updated: 27/04 14:32
AN EVESHAM couple have set off for their long boat journey to represent the county in this summer's Diamond Jubilee celebrations.
Andrew and Wendy Dyke, who both serve on Evesham town and Wychavon District Council, began their 200 mile cruise to London on Wednesday (April 25) during a special ceremony at Workman Gardens.
The pair were selected to take part in the Diamond Jubilee Flotilla which will see approximately 1,000 boats from all over the UK follow Her Majesty's lead on the River Thames on Sunday, June 3.
The gathering will be the largest flotilla of modern times and it is estimated a crowd of more than a million people will line the river banks to cheer the boats on.
Children from Cropthorne and Charlton First School were on hand to wave the couple off as were local dignitaries and Vale residents.
The journey will see the couple covering a total of 216 miles, 235 locks, 12 bridges, 17 aqueducts and twelve tunnels in their traditional narrow boat named 'Lord Toulouse.'
The boat will be patriotically decked in blue, red and white with Union Jack flags and 60 bows, one representing each year, on the big day. It will also be flying the Worcestershire flag.
A delighted Coun Dyke said they were thrilled to be among a lucky few chosen and will use the trip to help put the Vale and the rest of the county on the map.
"We want to do the county proud on the day and we hope that this event helps open up other people's eyes to the joys of boating and the stunning waterways Worcestershire is blessed with," he said. "The Flotilla really promises to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience."
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