Sean’s up the creek...with a pedalo!

Pedalo powered: Sean Keefe, left, on the canal near Galgate en route to Ashton in Preston
Pedalo powered: Sean Keefe, left, on the canal near Galgate en route to Ashton in Preston
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Musician Sean Keefe could never claim that he has been up the creek without a paddle.

But he can honestly boast that he’s been down the canal on a pedalo ... all 42 miles of it.

Sean, from Arkwright Road, Preston, decided last December that he needed to mark his mid-life crisis in style and drew up a list of zany activities to complete before he hit 40.

And although that birthday came and went in June, he is ploughing on with his promise to raise funds for the charity Macmillan Cancer.

He said: “I chose Macmillan because my aunty and my gran both died of cancer.

“I thought if I was going to have a mid-life crisis I might as well make it benefit someone and give people a few laughs by doing something daft.

“This is the daftest thing so far, but I’m a keen cyclist so I thought I’d be OK on a pedalo.

“I wanted to link the Edinburgh Fringe and Preston Tringe Festival in some way so I started off on my bike in Edinburgh and cycled to the start of the Lancaster Canal in Tewitfield, north of Carnforth.”

Sean, a professional guitarist and singer, set off in the pedalo, provided by UCLan, on Friday morning, and spent the next three days negotiating the waterway to its finish in the Ashton Basin.

He said: “By the end I was in agony but I’ve raised about £560 for Macmillan and another £300 for UCLan’s charity.”

Sean said that he received generous support from people along the route, including some who threw food and drink to him.

He also stopped off to do eight canalside concerts, the final one at the Ships and Giggles pub in Preston, and battled some of the worst weather of the summer, including torrential rain and hailstones.

He said: “I was expecting a tickertape welcome when I got back, but in the end it was just me.”

Sean has now completed 29 of his target of 40 fund-raising activities.

He is due to appear on Countdown in the New Year and before that is planning a wild golf session.

He said: “There are some things I haven’t managed to achieve - one was buying a pint for Noddy Holder from Slade when he was in Preston and another was getting to meet Stan Lee who worked on Marvel Comics.

“But he’s in his 90s now so there’s probably not much chance of that.”

l Preston Tringe Festival begins today and continues until September 28.