A 62-year-old father from Ham will be taking on the challenge of a lifetime this winter, by sailing to Antarctica with his brother. 

Alastair Rudd has no sailing experience, but decided to take on the challenge in October after a space became available on his brother's trip. 

While he will be accompanied by three experienced sailors, Mr Rudd has never taken on a challenge like this. He will be setting off for the Canaries in early December on board 'The Jon'. The 40-foot yacht will be home for the next few months.

The group will practise a few circuits and bumps, before setting of to Cape Verde, 1,800 KM away. After replenishing in Cape Verde, the group will embark on the main leg of the adventure. 

Mr Rudd joked that if anything goes wrong he will turn to his knowledge of diving to help him out, commenting: "I have never done anything close to this before. But it wasn't something I could turn down. It will be difficult but I am in safe company. Its also the first Christmas I will be away from my family which will be weird. We hope to return in mid-January, if everything goes plain sailing. 

"One of the biggest challenges will be being confined to such a small place with three other people." 

Mr Rudd said the main reason for taking on such a challenge is not only to hone his sailing skills but to also raise awareness and money for the RNLI, a cause close to home. Mr Rudd and his brother, Ivan, were both schooled in Devon and Cornwall and he said nothing more symbolises RNLI's work than the story of Solomon Browne, also known as the Penlee Lifeboat Disaster of 1981. 

As the date gets close nerves, and trepidation are beginning to set in for Mr Rudd but he hopes the group can rise vital funds for the charity. Their Just Giving page shows that £490 has been donated