A couple who have travelled Britain raising money for Alzheimer’s Society and awareness of dementia are heading to the Isle of Man with support from the Steam Packet Company.


Michael Payne and Kate Yates have already raised more than £2,500 for research into the condition, and are hoping for more donations when they attend the Isle of Man Festival of Motorcycling this month.


When Kate was diagnosed with Early Onset Alzheimer’s at the age of just 56 the pair formed Team Katy and embarked on two tours around Britain with their sidecar. Throughout their travels they discuss the condition with people they meet, collect donations and promote their page.


Michael and Kate will continue this mission when they tour the Isle of Man in their sidecar from 23rd August to 4th September.


Michael explained: ‘Kate was a keen rider herself until the disease robbed her of her licence, so touring Britain in a sidecar seemed a good way to keep up her involvement in riding, as well as raising awareness of Alzheimer’s and money for research.


‘One of Kate's priorities is to give people a greater understanding of the disease and we have managed to help a few people on the earlier trips, raising awareness of what Alzheimer’s means - it isn't just losing your memory.


‘I am hoping to give Kate a good experience during this trip, as well as collecting and raising awareness while in the Island. The Steam Packet Company’s very generous support has made a huge difference to the trip, as we are always working on a very tight budget and it has ensured the trip will be a reality. It has meant that we can book our ferry in good time and plan our fundraising with no worries.’


Michael and Kate will be collecting cash for the Alzheimer’s Society and promoting the donation website, but are also encouraging anyone with questions about dementia to speak to them during the visit. They will be touring the Island in their distinctive sidecar and are happy to chat.


The visit will also be documented on Team Katy’s Facebook page and Michael will be submitting articles about riding in the Isle of Man to Old Bike Mart magazine, which he writes monthly columns for.


Steam Packet Company Chief Executive Mark Woodward said: ‘Alzheimer’s is a devastating and often misunderstood condition, so the work of Michael and Kate in raising awareness and money for research is to be applauded.


‘We’re pleased to cover Team Katy’s travel costs for their visit to the Isle of Man, and I hope people will take the time to speak to them and make a donation.’