MacArthur supports Channel flotilla but only for qualified yachtsmen

Ellen MacArthur is backing Bob Geldof’s Sail8 initiative but says that sailors should be ‘qualified’.

Concerns have arisen after Geldof called on yachstmen to sail to France and pick up demonstrators who want to march to Edinburgh to protest at the G8 summit.

There are worries that his calls for a Dunkirk-like amarda could lead to inexperienced sailors setting sail in unsuitable boats.

In a statement Ellen said:

“I have decided to put my name to the Make Poverty History campaign and support the Sail 8 initiative because all of us are responsible for the world and the environment we live in.

“I do not claim to fully understand all the issues involved but I believe that if we can make our world leaders take on this campaign to help Third World countries then we should. We live in a world that is no longer separated by time or distance and we cannot ignore the suffering or poverty that is effecting so many of the world’s population.

“We have seen in the past how ‘people power’ can work and there is no doubt if everyone makes an effort to support this campaign the rewards will come for those that need it most.

“The Sail 8 initiative has been set up to encourage people to come from France via the main cross channel ferry operators or if they have the right qualifications and their own boat, and weather permitting, of course, they can sail across to Portsmouth or any other UK port and participate in the Long Walk to Justice to gather on the eve of the G8 summit. This is not a political crusade but a crusade to make your voice heard and to put an end to needless suffering.”

More information on Sail8 here