A SPECIAL ceremony took place in Monmouth on the weekend to unveil a new rowing boat in memory of a 13-year-old schoolboy from Devauden who died earlier this year.

Tom Walker, a pupil at Monmouth School for Boys, died unexpectedly from leukaemia in June.

Tom's family gathered at the school's rowing club on Saturday, December 8, to inaugurate The Otter boat.

Tom’s parents, Debbie and Tim; sisters, Holly and Emily; and grandfather, Glyn Smith, took turns to pour champagne over the boat to christen it.

The boat, named after Tom’s favourite mammal, was bought with funds raised by pupils and with money from Tom’s estate.

The Otter will be used widely by the school’s rowers in training and in competitions and could have its first major outing in March.

Rowers from the school recently rowed Loch Ness to raise money for the new boat and Cancer Research Wales.

Tom's sister Holly is organising a swimathon called Swim for Tom as part of another fundraising project, which has attracted more than 500 swimmers and will take place in the pool at Monmouth School for Girls on Sunday, January 6.