STRETFORD and Urmston Sea Cadets have been awarded a grant of more than £8,000 by Gannet — Messenger’s parent company.

This year the Gannet foundation distributed £328,588 in 38 grants to good causes across the UK, rewarding projects which take a creative approach to community needs and which benefit a large number of people.

The trustees’ objective is to deliver a real and lasting benefit to as many people reading our papers as possible and it is hoped that the Sea Cadets’ success will encourage other Trafford groups to apply next year.

Rachel Shepherd, training officer at the Stretford and Urmston Sea Cadet Unit, said a parent suggested the organisation enter, but members were very surprised to hear they had been awarded the money at the end of November.

“We had submitted the application quite a while ago and we obviously knew it was there, but we had kind of over-looked it,” said Rachel.

The unit has already used a large portion of the £8,266 it was awarded to buy two rowing boats, which will arrive by the end of January.

Rachel said most of the 10-18-year-old club members do not know about the boats yet, will be extremely excited when they hear the news.

She added that the Sea Cadets is a great organisation for young people to get involved in because it gives them the opportunity to take part in activities they would not ordinarily get to do and provides people with career prospects in the military and non-military sectors.