Challenge Series Archives - East Cheshire Hospice

Daredevil takes on ECH Wingwalk

Daredevil Tom Harding has no fears about standing on top of a plane and soaring through the sky.

Especially as his wing walk is raising funds for East Cheshire Hospice where his auntie Sarah Bell died six months ago.

The charity still has a few places left for those daring enough to strap themselves on to a 1940s Boeing Stearman biplane over a Gloucestershire airfield on Monday, July 11.

Tom, aged 27, cannot wait to get airborne after his safety briefing. He said: “I’ve got three brothers and they all think I’m mad.

“I’ve always been known as the wild one and I’d always be up for the challenge of a bungee jump or a banana boat.

“I think my brothers would love to have a go at the wing walk themselves but they can’t pluck up the courage. My younger brother Jack has just broken his wrist doing a bungee jump.”

Family, friends and work colleagues are sponsoring Tom, a service team operator at AstraZeneca. He is involved in the Zoladex project, a treatment for breast and prostate cancer patients.

The Harding brothers with dad Phil (centre). From left, Jack, James, Harry and Tom.

AstraZeneca have close links with the Hospice and will match fund Tom’s fundraising total which has already topped £1,100 with almost half that sum donated on the first day.

His family were overwhelmed by the care Sarah received at the Hospice. She was just 39 and died of melanoma cancer.

Tom said: “The way they looked after my auntie was incredible. I just wanted to give something back for all the care and love they gave her while she was there.

“We all speak highly of the Hospice and the work done by the nurses. Our granddad took the family on holidays and we shared those precious times with Sarah.

“She would be laughing her head off at the thought of me doing a wing walk.”

* To sponsor Tom visit justgiving.com/fundraising/tom-harding6

Interested wing walkers must be at least 18, no taller than 6 ft 2 in and no heavier than 14 stone, with a waist measurement of 40″ or less while wearing warm clothing and a jacket.

The cost is a £150 deposit upon registration and a guarantee to raise a minimum of £500 sponsorship.

* To sign up visit eastcheshirehospice.org.uk/events/wingwalk-2022/

All set for Born Survivor!

Getting wet and muddy is not usually Carley Macey’s idea of a fun day out.

But the daring community fundraiser is tackling a Born Survivor at Capesthorne Hall on Saturday, May 7, in aid of East Cheshire Hospice where she works.

Boyfriend Sean Taylor and fellow members at Silk Fitness Therapy are also ready to face the obstacle course, designed by Royal Marine commandos.

Sean Taylor and Carley Macey who are tackling a Born Survivor challenge.

Carley said: “I hate getting wet and dirty, it’s not me at all. I didn’t realise what I was signing up for initially and thought it might be a good laugh.

“I met Sean at the gym Christmas party in 2019 and he encouraged me to sign up. We’ve waited a long time to do this because the event was delayed after the pandemic hit.

“Our gym is part of the Hospice’s 500 Club and members are treating the event as a fundraising and bonding exercise with coach Mike Mason, who runs our PT sessions, also taking part.

“We’ve all agreed to stick together,  but if Sean leaves me behind I’m not sure we’ll be together after the event!” joked Carley.

The charity’s other corporate supporters, financial planners Equilibrium and recruiters Leap29, have also entered teams as part of their on-going fundraising.

The adventure involves slides, cold water obstacles, climbing nets and walls and underground tunnels.

* To donate visit justgiving.com/fundraising/carley-m, or justgiving.com/team/TeamSFT

The deadline to register to take part is 5 pm on Friday, April 29. Visit born-survivor.com/manchester-2022/

Canoe Brothers update

Two brothers attempting to canoe across the country are hoping to learn from celebrity Jordan North after his similar adventure.

The BBC Radio 1 DJ rowed 100 miles from London to his home town Burnley, via an elaborate network of canals, in aid of Comic Relief.

Tom and George Bentham, from Macclesfield, will instead paddle a canoe and travel from west to east for their nine-day voyage covering 184 miles.

George Bentham (front) and brother Tom training for their epic canoe trip. 

The pair are aiming to raise £15,000 for East Cheshire Hospice and Macmillan which cared for their late father Mark.

The Benthams have begun training for their Canoe Against Cancer trip in September after buying a second-hand vessel for £850.

Work and family commitments have so far limited the amount of time the pair have spent together in the canoe.

So, too, the fact George lives in Halifax, although the pair undertook a 10-mile trial along the Macclesfield Canal.

Tom Bentham (front) and George getting in paddling practice.   

Tom said: “The stormy weather didn’t help, but we’ve done a lot of training separately in the gym and we’ve a lot of time to build up our fitness.

“The first time we got in a canoe we had a day of coaching from an instructor in Wales who went through all the techniques with us.

“That highlighted that it’s a technical challenge, as well as physical, because going in a straight line is easier said than done.

“It’s not what either of us expected and once when we tried to manoeuvre sideways we made a mistake of leaning over too much and almost capsized.

“Having said that, the canoe is quite stable. The crucial thing for a two-man crew is to be synchronised.

“We’ve seen Jordan North’s rowing trip for Comic Relief and hopefully we’ll get a few tips from him and can liaise over the challenges of travelling under your own power through the canal network.”

Tom and George are looking for sponsors and are also holding a raffle as part of their fundraising.

Dad Mark, a chef and sailor, died of cancer in September 2019, aged 58. The Hospice needs £7,500 a day to keep its doors open, hence their target.

Their coast-to-coast journey begins at Glasson Dock, near Lancaster, and goes to Merseyside before Manchester, Huddersfield, Wakefield and the Humber.

Canals, commercial waterways, small rivers, tidal rivers and seaways all feature in the complex route.

* To sponsor the brothers email canoeagainstcancer@gmail.com or visit linktr.ee/canoeagainstcancer

Martin Foster’s 100 miles over four days between 10 North West hospices

A brief stop in Macclesfield was part of Martin Foster’s epic journey between 10 north west hospices.

The dad-of-two ran 100 miles over four days to highlight the terrific work undertaken by hospices, including East Cheshire.

There,  Martin was greeted by nurses and other well wishers on the third day of his fundraising challenge.

It was his toughest day, preceded by an 18-mile run from Willow Wood, Tameside, and followed by a 10-mile leg to St Ann’s Hospice in Heald Green.

Martin, programme lead for Greater Manchester hospices, said: “My aim was to raise the profile of the hospice sector and their wonderful work.

“People think hospices are really sad places, only existing to support those needing care at the very end of their life. Obviously, there are very sad times and end-of-life care is such an important part of what hospices offer, but so much more goes on too.

“Patients are cared for right through their journey with a range of services local people simply wouldn’t have access to if hospices didn’t exist.

“They rely heavily on their communities fundraising and, having worked so closely with them, I just had to put my trainers on and do my bit to support them.”

East Cheshire Hospice is the second lowest funded in the country, receiving 17 per cent of the income it needs to keep going from government. It costs £7,500 a day to provide palliative care for patients, their family and carers.

* To donate visit gofundme.com/gmhospices.

Martin Foster runs 100 miles in 4 days

A brief stop in Macclesfield was part of Martin Foster’s epic journey between 10 north west hospices.

The dad-of-two ran 100 miles over four days to highlight the terrific work undertaken by hospices, including East Cheshire.

There,  Martin was greeted by nurses and other well wishers on the third day of his fundraising challenge.

Picture of Martin Foster at East Cheshire Hospice.

It was his toughest day, preceded by an 18-mile run from Willow Wood, Tameside, and followed by a 10-mile leg to St Ann’s Hospice in Heald Green.

Martin, programme lead for Greater Manchester hospices, said: “My aim was to raise the profile of the hospice sector and their wonderful work.

“People think hospices are really sad places, only existing to support those needing care at the very end of their life. Obviously, there are very sad times and end-of-life care is such an important part of what hospices offer, but so much more goes on too.

“Patients are cared for right through their journey with a range of services local people simply wouldn’t have access to if hospices didn’t exist.

“They rely heavily on their communities fundraising and, having worked so closely with them, I just had to put my trainers on and do my bit to support them.”

East Cheshire Hospice is the second lowest funded in the country, receiving 17 per cent of the income it needs to keep going from government. It costs £7,500 a day to provide palliative care for patients, their family and carers.

* To donate visit gofundme.com/gmhospices.

Charlie Worrall 10k charity walk

Grandfather Charlie Worrall took his family along for support on a demanding 10-kilometre charity walk.

Charlie, who is 89 in May, took part in a Pie and a Pint challenge in aid of East Cheshire Hospice.

Charlie Worrall on his 10k walk.

Daughters Lynne, Vivienne and Dianne were with him every step of the way on the journey.

Vivienne’s partner John Curtis and friends Liz and Michael Kelly also went along, though missing was Charlie’s pet dog Trudy.

Conditions were so bad with wind and rain the Jack Russell preferred the warmth at home.

The family joined around 200 walkers who completed a stroll through the Cheshire countryside.

The Worralls were raising funds in memory of Charlie’s wife June who died in the Hospice five years ago, aged 80.

Charlie enjoyed a refreshing pint and a pie at the finish at Macclesfield Rugby Union Club where the walk had begun a few hours earlier.

From left, sisters Dianne Worrall, Lynne Dale and Vivienne Worrall with dad Charlie.

Charlie said: “I don’t drink generally, but must admit I was ready for a glass of lager and lime at the end  and certainly enjoyed the taste of the pie.

“I’m quite active and take Trudy for a walk every day, usually for about an hour.

“This was much further than I’d normally go and getting over the stiles and over the muddy puddles wasn’t easy. But it was nice that we could all do the walk together for a great cause.

“June spent the last five days of her life at the Hospice and was cared for with dignity and respect while she was a patient there.”

The couple, who have five children, were married for 61 years.

Vivienne was first to sign up for the walk, having raised funds for the charity before when she completed a walk around the UK and climbed Mount Kilimanjaro.

Once sisters Lynne and Dianne were persuaded to join her for this latest challenge, Charlie asked to join them.

The family have raised more than £1,500 in sponsorship, well over the initial target.

Lynne said: “We’re amazed how the total went up so quickly. People have been kind and generous and it was the thought that others were willing to help and donate that fuelled Charlie’s determination.

“We’re extremely grateful to everyone who has supported Charlie and the Hospice.”

*To sponsor Charlie visit justgiving.com/fundraising/vivienne-worrall2

Brothers take on canoe challenge

Brothers Tom and George Bentham are throwing themselves in at the deep end with a bizarre canoe challenge.

The pair will paddle a canoe from one side of the country to the other as a tribute to their late father Mark, a chef and sailor.

The brothers had never even sat in a canoe before until they bought a two-man vessel last month to start training.

Their aim is to raise £15,000 for East Cheshire Hospice and Macmillan which cared for Mark, from Broken Cross, who died of cancer in September 2019, aged 58.

Mark Bentham who was a keen chef and sailor.

Tom and George are looking for sponsors for September’s aqua adventure when they hope to paddle 184 miles over nine days.

Tom, also a chef, said: “Dad became a chef by cooking on private yachts around the world and was also a passionate sailor.

“Being on the water opened up his love of food and sea food. He also ran a restaurant and then went into the food production side.

“One of his favourite passions was taken from him when his aggressive throat cancer quickly spread to his stomach, preventing him from eating.

“Our canoe challenge isn’t just about our dad and his story. It’s about trying to raise that target to thank the charities.

Brothers George (left) and Tom Bentham who are canoeing across the country.

“George and me looked at each other during dad’s time with East Cheshire and saw the figure of £7,500 on the door, the amount needed every day to keep the Hospice going.

“We said for everything they’ve done we owe them and need to do our part to support and pay them back as a thank you. Our fundraising is about supporting them because they supported us all, when you truly need it.

“Hopefully, we can raise awareness for the charities because like so many things until you rely, or need these services, you don’t actually appreciate how valuable they are.

“We decided to do the thing we least wanted to do to take us out of our comfort zone. It’s a fairly large expedition and is going to need a lot of planning, time and commitment.

“It’s also going to require all sorts of skill and I’m sure pain, blood, sweat and a few tears along the way. But it seems the only thing that does credit to East Cheshire Hospice and Macmillan.

* To sponsor the brothers email canoeagainstcancer@gmail.com or visit linktr.ee/canoeagainstcancer

Round the world sailor Heather Broadbent

Round-the-world sailor Heather Broadbent is raring to go again as she prepares to set sail on her epic voyage.

She is determined to finish the race – and reach her £40,000 fundraising target for East Cheshire Hospice.

Heather has already raised £30,000 for the Hospice where her late husband Adam (45) was a patient.  Funds raised will go towards Hospice @Home services.

She flies out to the Philippines in late February where she will resume the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race a month later.

The event was halted for two years because of the pandemic and the route has been changed with three China stops cancelled.

Heather Broadbent on her voyage.

Heather, a landscape gardener from Disley, said: “I’m keen to finish what I started both for myself and the Hospice. I’m excited and nervous, but the big goal has always been to get across the Pacific and then we’re homeward bound.

“The Hospice needs the funds now more than ever because of the loss of fundraising revenue caused by Covid-19, so I’m grateful for any donations.

“I set a target of £40,000 because that’s how many miles the race will eventually cover.”

Heather and her crew on board their yacht GoToBermuda will cross the Pacific en route to Seattle before reaching Bermuda in June.

Then it is off to New York before the final Atlantic leg eventually back to London in July where Heather’s voyage began almost three years earlier.

* To sponsor Heather visit justgiving.com/fundraising/dreamitnowdoit.

Helm family take on Trek Sahara

Escape those winter blues and trek across the Sahara desert camping under the stars. A year from now that is exactly what a group of East Cheshire Hospice supporters will be doing.

There is still a chance to join them, with the end of December the deadline for signing up. Among the party will be Jo Helm, a health care assistant with the Hospice’s Hospice @Home service, husband David and son Jack.

The family have each paid the £325 registration fee and all pledged to raise a minimum of £1,990 in sponsorship for the Hospice.  Jack (19) even dipped into his savings for a Ford Capri he dreams of owning to pay his share.

Jack, Jo and David Helm who are trekking across the Sahara.

The Moroccan adventure, from November 12-19, involves a 50 km trek over sand dunes in scorching temperatures. The four-day trek is followed by two days helping on a community project in Marrakech.

Contact Bethan Wade on 01625 789102 or email bwade@echospice.org.uk for more details.

Jo said: “I always enjoy a challenge and know it won’t be a walk in the park. I don’t mind the heat, unlike David who prefers it cooler.

“I’ve worked at the Hospice for a year and know how valuable it is to the community. It’s such a privilege to work there and Hospice @Home is an amazing service.”

David, a mental health recovery worker, said: “I wanted to do a trip like this when I came out of the Forces but never managed it. The Hospice is a fantastic cause and I know what Jo goes through at work and what it’s like to work there.”

The couple did a wing walk in June, conquering Jo’s fear of heights. She said: “I was scared getting on the plane and was shaking like mad. It was petrifying, but a lot of adrenaline and support from colleagues helped.

Jo and David are set for another challenge after their wing walk.

“I relaxed once I was up there and the reasons we’re doing it, and the patients we care for, made it all worthwhile.”

The Helms ran a competition to guess the weight of a pumpkin, raising £150 towards their Sahara target. Berghaus have supplied them with coats and rucksacks and Regatta have donated sleeping bags.

The Hospice offers fundraising ideas for the trip and a self-funded option is available. To register, or for more details, visit eastcheshirehospice.org.uk/events/trek-sahara/

* To sponsor the Helms visit one of the following links justgiving.com/fundraising/joanne-helm3, or david-helm7, or jack-helm1.

Finley Foot chases his ambitions

Kind-hearted runner Finley Foote has set a fast pace as he chases an ambitious £10,000 fundraising target. His total already stands at an impressive £7,000 – an amazing achievement for the Bollington schoolboy who became a teenager several weeks ago.

Finley sprang into action 18 months ago when the first lockdown forced East Cheshire Hospice to cancel several fundraising events, including a Splash Out day his family had intended to take part in. When Finley heard about the charity’s plight, he ran two and a half miles every day to raise  sponsorship while his school was shut. Many others members of the community also undertook similar fundraising challenges, generously helping out the Hospice.

Finley Foote on one of his runs.

Except that Finley has never stopped running or raising funds since, rarely taking a day off from exercise and clocking up 848 miles in the process. He has long since returned to Tytherington School where teachers and class mates have supported his efforts.

Finley received a Macclesfield Mayoral youth commendation for his community contribution after a nomination by teachers. He is also due to receive a similar civic award in Bollington.

Finley receives his Mayoral award from Cllr Sarah Bennett-Wake, watched by Emmanuel Botwe, Headteacher at Tytherington School.

Proud mum Sarah said: “Finley was self-motivated to go out and do the fundraising himself. I also think the running helped his mental health during lockdown because he’s so active and was gutted that all his sport stopped.

“It was his way of keeping himself going and now he’s decided he wants to raise £10,000 for the Hospice.

“He ran every day during both lockdowns and decided himself that he’d run again when he couldn’t go back to school after Christmas.

“It has required a lot of stamina, especially with all the sport he plays, and he’s been out running even if he’s not quite felt 100 per cent.

“Finley still goes off and does his runs and is keen to enter some organised runs to keep trying to raise more money.

“I’m also proud that he’s aware people have already given him money for the fundraising and so he can’t keep asking them. He’s sensitive to that and realistic and knows a lot have sponsored him. ”

Finley, and friend Matty Dowd, were among the youngest to tackle a gruelling Tough Mudder last month, and thanks to more donations, the total is creeping up.

* To sponsor Finley visit justgiving.com/fundraising/sarah-latham22

Finley taking part in a Tough Mudder to raise funds.