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Surf Action Ride Their Wave of Success on National TV

24th October 2013

National Lottery funded Cornish project Surf Action will appear in a TV interview on this Saturday’s National Lottery Live.

Surf Action was set up by Cornishman Rich Emerson, who suffered Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) following his service in Iraq. The National Lottery funded project recognises the benefits of surfing in helping veterans and their families deal with deal with PTSD and physical injury.

The National Lottery Live on Saturday 26th October, BBC One, will feature Surf Action’s Rich Emerson and Afghanistan veteran David Roderick-Jones in a live interview with Chris Evans, to accompany a short film of the project.

After active duty in the first Gulf War, ex-soldier Rich Emerson found himself suffering from PTSD. Today he has found his life improved through the focus and confidence he gained from learning to surf.

Rich says, of Surf Action’s mission to spread the message of their innovative therapy to former soldiers, “Our core purpose is to focus on the wellbeing and support of combat veterans and their families.”

Thanks to over £400,000 of National Lottery funding, Surf Action has grown and enabled the project to work with over 200 veterans and service personnel since 2009.
Rich says, “Surf Action has brought smiles to the faces of serving member of the armed forces, veterans and family members. We have shown them that anything is possible and surfing clearly has benefits to rehabilitation in terms of balance and mental strength.”

Surf Action’s qualified instructors and volunteers are helping soldiers to regain their confidence, providing their therapeutic sessions to help them get back to work and community life.

Jackie O’Sullivan, spokesperson for the National Lottery, said “People don’t always make the connection between playing the National Lottery and funding fantastic projects across the UK, which make a massive difference to millions of people’s lives.

“This is the most exciting revamp of Lotto since it launched in 1994 and it’s a great opportunity to showcase some of the amazing projects that have benefitted from the money National Lottery players raise each and every week.”

National Lottery players raise over £35 million for projects every week, and since 1994 a whopping £30 billion has been raised to help more than 400, 000 projects across the arts, sports, heritage, charities, health, education and the environment.

To find out more about how National Lottery players’ money is supporting people, projects and places across the UK, visit

Notes to editors

• For further details on Surf Action visit

• For further information please contact Nicola Bligh on 0207 211 3991,