THE funeral of a disability campaigner and charity founder has taken place - but not without a last trip on his favourite stretch of the Leeds Liverpool Canal.

Richard Clarke's coffin was placed near the bow of Endeavour - since renamed Richard's Endeavour in his honour - as she took him from the Fisherman pub to Hirst Lock, near Bingley, in a lasting tribute.

Richard was the former chairman of Skipton and Craven Action for Disability (SCAD) and founder of the Spirit of Endeavour charity.

He died at home following a short illness on September 29. He was surrounded by his family; wife Wendy, children Kim and Bobbi, granddaughter Jasmine, and his spaniel, Dylan.

A huge person in the charity world, Richard, as well as chair of SCAD and one of four trustees of the Spirit of Endeavour, he was also trustee of Eldwick Memorial Hall and National Community Boats Association and field manager for Eldwick Gala. He will be very much missed by a wide circle of former colleagues and friends.

He was very proud of the SCAD charity shop which operated from premises in Newmarket Street, Skipton. It offered support to older and disabled people across the district and had been going for more than 40 before it became a casualty of Covid and collapsed earlier this year.

It provided a life line for many people and organised day trips and pursuits from swimming to carpet bowls, as well as provided a 'dial-a-ride' transport fleet of five wheelchair accessible minibuses for those who struggled to access public transport to get to appointments and shopping. There was also a shop in Cross Hills.

The SCAD narrowboat was a genius idea to allow disabled people to enjoy canal trips. It was transferred to another charity at the beginning of 2022 and operated under the same ethos.

Richard worked tirelessly to ensure that Endeavour became her own charity, to give her the chance to step out from behind the community transport of Skipton & Craven Action for Disability and shine in her own right. This he achieved.

More skippers have qualified to steer her with lots of new volunteers helping to crew her and ready to provide over 1,000 passenger journeys on her each year.

A funeral service for Richard was held at Shay Grange Crematorium on Friday, October 272023, followed by refreshments at The Birches, Eldwick. At the family's request, attendees were encouraged to wear colour in celebration of his life.

Donations given in memory of Richard will be forwarded to 'The Spirit of Endeavour' charity.