A fundraising drive to support detained sailor Nick Dunn is gathering pace.
Nick, from Ashington, has been stranded in India for 21 months after being part of a 35-man crew arrested on suspicion of gun charges.
Although the charges were dropped last year, Indian police appealed the decision and the 29-year-old was rocked by the news at the start of the month that he would face a new trial.
Now, friends and strangers are holding a number of fundraising events to help cover Nick’s living and legal costs while detained in India.
One of those keen to help is Mal Thompson, who knows Nick from the gym they both go to in Ashington.
He had already signed up to take part in the ‘Hell of Hexham’ cycle ride on August 1 and has now decided to take in sponsorship to help Nick, already raising nearly £500.
The event features a 52-mile ride across tough terrain, including 4,796ft of climbs.
Mal, of North Seaton, said: “I know Nick through the gym I go to and say ‘hello’ to him whenever I see him.
“I’ve been following the story since the start then when I heard about the retrial I was flabbergasted, we thought he was coming home soon.
“A friend of a friend decided to do something to help raise money for the family and Nick’s costs as there has been no help from the Government.
“I had already entered the event and decided to help raise money for the family.
“I just want to raise as much as I can. I have already raised more than I thought, and had a lot of support from my colleagues at Nestle.”
Elsewhere, a fundraising page – www.gofundme.com/xyet5w – has raised nearly £1,000.