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PEOPLE across Scotland are being urged to sign up for a new ‘oar-inspiring’ fundraising challenge for Cancer Research UK.

Men and women of all ages and abilities are being urged to enter the charity’s indoor rowing challenge – The Great Row – to raise money for vital research.


Landlubbers or water babies alike can get involved as participants complete the challenge on a rowing machine at their local gym and don’t need a boat to help beat cancer sooner.

The Great Row is part of Cancer Research UK’s three year partnership with The Oxford and Cambridge Boat Races which take place on the 27th March, 2016.

They have teamed up to help raise an ambitious £3 million for the charity’s life-saving work.

People in and around Paisley can show their support by signing up for The Great Row.

Individuals or teams can choose to complete different levels of challenge from now until the 26th March – the day before the big race – with rowing distances starting from 2,000 metres and going up to a full marathon.

Linda Summerhayes, Cancer Research UK spokesperson in Scotland, said: “When it comes to cancer, we’re all in the same boat. The disease does not discriminate – almost everyone will have either experienced cancer themselves or know someone who has been affected.

“That’s why we need as many people as possible in and around Paisley to show us their pulling power and sign up for The Great Row.

“Rowing is a great way for people to mix up their usual exercise routine or try something new to get fitter and healthier in 2016.

“By taking part and raising vital funds, participants can row their way to greatness with a challenge that will not only make them feel great physically, but will also help to save lives.”

Every day, around 85 people are diagnosed with cancer in Scotland *.

Money raised by The Great Row will advance research which is helping more men, women and children in Scotland and across the UK to survive the devastating disease.

Thanks to the generosity of its supporters, Cancer Research UK was able to spend around £31 million in Scotland last year on some of the UK’s leading scientific and clinical research.

Olympic gold medallist Sir Matthew Pinsent CBE, who is supporting the challenge, said: “This might be easy for me to say, but you don’t have to be an experienced rower to take part in The Great Row. There’s a challenge to suit every level, whether you’ve never used a rowing machine before or you think you might win an Olympic medal one day.

“Setting yourself a challenge is a great way to get fit and you’ll see the rewards of training as your times get better and better. On top of that, it’s a great way to support Cancer Research UK’s work to beat cancer sooner and I really hope thousands of people join us and do their own Great Row.”

Tips from Sir Matthew, a free training plan and fundraising pack are available from The Great Row website.

Fitness First is supporting the challenge and is offering participants free access to their gyms to train or complete their chosen distance on set days. Free access is available every Friday from January to March or every day from 19th – 26th March – the final week before the official Oxford and Cambridge Boat Races.

To enter The Great Row visit cruk.org/TheGreatRow or join the conversation on Twitter by following #TheGreatRow.