On Saturday morning we woke up to the sight of a small rowing boat anchored off the east coast of the island. Seeing anyone this year has been a rarity let alone a craft as small as this what in was rapidly deteriorating weather conditions. Being nosy I got my binoculars out and noticed a big blue and white NHS symbol on the side and a web site address....

A few clicks later and I discovered I was looking at the Rowing Roy team; Duncan Roy and Gus Barton to be precise. The duo are rowing unsupported around Britain to raise money for the NHS during these challenging times. Their aim is to set a new world record for this feat.

The Rowing Roy boat - home to Duncan and Gus for the best part of 40-50 days!

I'm sure they hadn't anticipated plain sailing all the way and they certainly didn't get any this weekend! A wet and wild weekend with heavy rain and gale force winds meant they were forced to sit out 3 nights anchored off our east coast on the sheltered side of the island. As you can see from the photos it is a tiny vessel and as picturesque as Ramsey is I'm sure they would have preferred to have been making headway in their quest.

Scale of the boat against our east cliffs

We made contact and have kept in touch with each other via text and email and Duncan and Gus are in good spirits. I told them to listen out for Manx shearwaters last night and they reported back this afternoon that not only were they treated to the ghostly sound of hundreds coming ashore last night above their boat but they were fortunate to see some in the fading light as they gathered offshore.

The good news is the wind is dropping enough tonight for them to continue their journey and they plan to up anchor and continue north at midnight.

We may not have been able to meet up but it's been a pleasure having them as our neighbours these past few days and we wish them all the best in the rest of their incredible adventure for such a great cause.

If you would like to find out more about Rowing Roy and donate towards their NHS challenge click here - good luck lads!

Images from the online Rowing Roy tracker - you can follow them via their website by clicking the link above

(as always click on the photos to open them in full resolution to see them more clearly)