A BOAT believed to have travelled thousands of miles from Rhode Island has washed up in Mudeford.

Peter Waine and Tom Walker have discovered a 5-foot-long mini boat on Mudeford beach, which according to an onboard document, has travelled from Rhode Island.

The friends had been out walking when they noticed the boat stranded on the shore and decided to investigate further.

Opening a sealed hatch in the boat revealed a tracker and laminated documents, which explained the boat had been sent on its way as part of an Oceanology project by the University of Rhode Island.

Bournemouth Echo: The washed up boat at Mudeford BeachThe washed up boat at Mudeford Beach (Image: Carly Waine/Peter Waine/Tom Walker)

It transpired that the university had been encouraging children at schools across Central Falls in Rhode Island to take part and send off their own mini boats. 

The boat found by Peter and Tom is understood to have been sent by Veterans Memorial Elementary.

One of the documents found onboard reads: “Students in Central Falls are working together to build, launch and track their very own mini boat while learning about ocean currents, weather, technology and more.

"Each 5-foot-long mini boat has a satellite transmitter, allowing students to track it as it sails on its own across the ocean.”

It adds that the project will help share the Central Falls community with “new friends who recover the mini boat on distance shores”.

Bournemouth Echo: Documents found onboard which explain the programDocuments found onboard which explain the program (Image: Carly Waine/Peter Waine/Tom Walker)

Peter Waine’s wife, Carly, said he was “lucky” to have discovered the boat. She said: “My husband and his friend Tom were walking our dog, and they found it washed up on the shore.

“My husband has his own company, and his friend works with boats, so they had the tools to be able to open it and put it in the van. So, they may not have been the first to see it, but they were the lucky ones.”

Carly works as a teacher at Tiptoe Primary School in Lymington and was keen to share her husband’s discovery with the children.

She said: “It’s at Tiptoe Primary School at the minute. I’m the process of showing the children.

“They love it. Some of them didn’t believe that we found it, but since we’ve opened it, they’ve realised it’s a real thing. So, it’s been really exciting.”