A Viking ship made from ice-cream sticks set sail for England from the Netherlands yesterday 9/4/08

The 15-metre (50-foot) long ship, named after the Norse god Thor, has been made from 15 million recycled ice-cream sticks glued together by US-born stuntman Robert McDonald, along with his son and more than 5,000 children.

‘If you can dream it you can do it … I want to teach children that anything is possible,’ McDonald said.

Badly injured as a child in a gas explosion that killed the rest of his family, he has loaded his ship with cuddly toys and plans to reach London next week and visit children in hospitals.

He and his crew hope to cross the Atlantic next, on the ancient Viking route to North America via Iceland and Greenland.