Caple director takes on 85-mile rowing challenge for charity

Caple service director richard wood
Caple’s service director, Richard Wood, with daughter Billie, the BEWT charity’s namesake

Caple’s service director, Richard Wood, is taking part in an 85-mile rowing challenge to raise funds for The Billie Elizabeth Wood Trust (BEWT).

Prior to his charity preparations, Wood had no previous swimming or rowing experience, so is having to learn the skills so he can safely and successfully complete the five-day rowing challenge along the Thames, from Clifton Hampden to Walton Bridge.

The BEWT is Caple’s official charity and was founded by Richard and his family following the tragic death of his daughter Billie, who passed away in 2020 due to a subarachnoid haemorrhage at the age of 25.

Billie was also the niece of Caple’s managing director, Danny Lay, and financial director, Graham Perry, as well as the granddaughter of chairman Maurice Lay. Commenting on the charity and its significance to Caple’s senior management team,

Speaking about the charity and the challenge, Wood said: “Caple is a family business and, as such, the company is fully committed to supporting and promoting this charity as its cause.

“We will be on the water for a number of days during the challenge and I was never taught to swim as a child so I’ve been learning how to master front crawl and breast stroke in weekly lessons with a fitness instructor. I just need to be able to get to the side of the Thames if I need to!”

The money raised by Richard and his fundraising team will be used by the BEWT to fund research into the trauma that led to Billie’s death. Thanks to previous fundraising events, the charity has reportedly already raised over £200,000 in aid of research to better understand subarachnoid haemorrhages, as well as attempt to prevent them from happening in the future.

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