The RAF Falcons parachute display team will be joining walkers and cyclists raising money to support the haematology unit and other wards at South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust’s hospitals.
This second annual ‘purple walk’ hopes to break the £40,000 mark – building on the £29,000 raised to date by organisers Mark Stewart and Brian Jones – following last year’s walk around the Tees Barrage which attracted over 400 participants.
This year’s walk is open to all ages and abilities. The fun event will provide the opportunity to get out and about in the fresh air with one and four mile leisure walks, and even has the option of a 16 mile non-competitive cycle ride for those inspired by the recent Tour-de-France.
Come along with your family and friends on Saturday 23 August, at Preston Park in Eaglescliffe, from 9.30am. You can support any ward, department or hospital that means something to you and your family. Supported by Stockton Borough Council, any participant will be given 50% off entry to the Preston Park Summer Show taking place over the same weekend, 24 and 25 August.
It is the first event in the national ‘walk for wards’ programme and walkers are encouraged to wear something purple along with their walking boots and take part in the second purple walk to benefit the haematology department at The James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough.
The RAF Falcons will be dropping in to show case their thrilling air acrobatics to entertain the crowds. Recognised as the UK’s premier military parachute display team, they perform their colourful aerial display at venues nationwide and are renowned for captivating audiences with exciting free fall displays that include advanced manoeuvres falling at speeds up to 120 mph, and the famous unique non-contact canopy stack.
The team includes local paratrooper, Rob Hetherington, 31, from Northallerton who was recruited at the careers office in Middlesbrough. Rob, who has been with the RAF for 11½ years has just completed his first year of three with the Falcons. He was inspired to join after hearing all about his grandfather’s experience as a Wellington navigator in world war two.
If you would like to take part in the walks we are asking that £15 minimum sponsorship is raised per family or £10 per adult and £1 each child on the day. The one mile route is wheelchair friendly and people are also welcome to bring their dogs, on the lead.
Suzi Campbell from South Tees Hospitals Charity said: “We are hoping people will come along and join us and show their support for doctors and nurses at their local hospitals and help raise funds to enhance care for local patients.”
Full registration details are available on the website www.walkforwards.co.uk/join/purplewalk There has already been a lot of interest in this event so early registration is advisable.