A BLIND pensioner doesn’t let his handicap hold him back with his twice weekly hobby - water skiing. Peter Sheath, 74, from Southampton, has been water skiing for a quarter of a century - despite being blind since the age of 30.
He no longer performs daring tricks and jumps, such as 360 degree turns, like he used to but still gets on to the water as often as possible. Sheath said: “I love waterskiing because to a certain degree you’re independent and you can do things able-bodied people can do.  You’re out there enjoying yourself with the wind blowing through your hair - I’ve always liked the freedom.
I think in some ways being blind helps because the instant visual fear factor is removed. I never feel scared.”
Heath’s sight loss was inherited - his grandfather had gone blind at 30 and he always knew he might be affected.
In his 50s, Heath competed in open age water skiing competitions for disabled people, collecting an array of medals and even a world record with a 40ft jump. He added: “If you want to do something, do it - with waterskiing it doesn’t matter what disability you have, there’s always a way of getting you onto the water.
As long as I’m fit and healthy I will carry on waterskiing for the foreseeable future.”–WO