TAUNTON could soon have its own solar-powered riverboat thanks to a TV competition.

The Somerset Waterways Development Trust, based at Creech St Michael, is one of two groups in the ITV West Region looking to land a £50,000 prize in the People’s Millions next Tuesday.

They would use the money to buy a silent-running boat which would provide trips for all the community on the River Tone and the Bridgwater Canal.

The other project is for a community path near Weston Super Mare.

The winner will be decided by a public telephone vote and this week the Trust urged people to support their project.

Alec Hay, the Trust’s events director: “It’s all down to the public vote and I would urge as many people as possible to support a project which would be a great boon to the area.”

The competition is one of four being held on ITV West from Monday to Thursday. Voting lines will open at 9am on the day the projects are due to appear on TV and winners will be announced the following day.

The runner-up that chalks up the most phone votes will also win a grant to be the fifth winner, announced next Friday.

Michael Grade, Executive Chairman of ITV, said: "ITV and the Big Lottery Fund have established a strong working relationship and we are delighted to support The People's Millions.”

Calls will cost 10p per call from a BT landline, calls from other networks may vary and from mobiles will be considerably more.