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Youngsters' adventure on board research boat up the River Orwell and Stour estuaries

PUBLISHED: 13:00 25 October 2016

The new crew of the Song of the Whale research vessel prepare to set off on their adventure

The new crew of the Song of the Whale research vessel prepare to set off on their adventure

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Lucky groups of youngsters are being treated to an adventure up the River Orwell and Stour estuaries - learning about the wildlife on Suffolk's coastlines on board a sailing boat.

The new crew of the Song of the Whale research vessel prepare to set off on their adventureThe new crew of the Song of the Whale research vessel prepare to set off on their adventure

The project, ‘Our Estuaries, Our Youth, Our Heritage’ is being run by Ipswich-based Marine Conservation Research International (MCRI) and supported by the Heritage Lottery fund.

The first set of excited children, all from Suffolk Family Carers, set off on Saturday on their expedition on board research vessel ‘Song of the Whale’. Staying on the boat overnight, the youngsters got a discover the wildlife Suffolk has to offer as well as the human impact that affects our coastline.

They will also create presentations, Instagram photo diaries and audio podcasts while on board.

In total 40 young people, aged from 11 to 16, will have the chance to take part in the project over the next few weeks, including groups from YMCA Suffolk and Basecamp Mentoring Suffolk.

The new crew of the Song of the Whale research vessel prepare to set off on their adventureThe new crew of the Song of the Whale research vessel prepare to set off on their adventure

Richard McLanaghan, MCRI director, said: “We are excited to be kicking off these trips following many months of planning, and are delighted to be able to offer an exciting new perspective to local young people from our partner organisations, on the important heritage of the Orwell and Stour estuaries .

“We have a range of activities planned, from treasure hunts, to knot work, bat detecting and plankton trawling, to help us discover more about the fascinating history as well as documenting the fantastic biodiversity living here, which we must all work together to protect.”

Julie Thurston, Young People’s service manager from Suffolk Family Carers added: “We are very excited to be involved in this project.

“This will be a great opportunity for young carers to experience a sailing weekend as well as understand more about local wildlife and conservation”

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