MORE than 100 military personnel spent their free time running a mile around a parade ground in aid of a good cause.
The Norfolk Trophy Challenge took place yesterday at HMS Collingwood in Fareham and saw each entrant run a mile in a relay.
The festive event usually takes place onboard ships and is called the Mike Till Trophy. It had been adapted, including using a cracker for a baton, and was held on land for the first time.
Participants dressed in Christmas attire, including reindeer antlers, fairy wings and a fetching Mrs Santa dress.
Petty Officer Roger Shepherd took part. The 38-year-old said: ‘It’s good fun. Now I can really look forward to Christmas.’
The runners were raising money for The Rainbow Centre, which is in Fareham and helps children with cerebral palsy and adults affected by stroke, Parkinson’s Disease, multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy and head injuries.
Lieutenant Colonel Nigel Griffiths was overseeing the efforts and ran the last mile dressed in a Father Christmas outfit.
He said: ‘It is a great event for a charity that HMS Collingwood has a close affiliation with.
‘It just shows how much people here think of the charity to see more than 100 people take part.
‘We call it a BZ (Bravo Zulu) in navy speak which means “well done”.’
The event was organised by PO (CIS) Simon Nelson, 36, and LPT Vicky Jarvis, 26.
Simon said: ‘It is good for moral to do something like this before Christmas leave.’
Vicky said: ‘It went well, the best time was around five minutes 44 second.’
Sarah Guild, from The Rainbow Centre, said: ‘We really appreciate the support from Collingwood.
‘They are always so enthusiastic about taking part in challenges and supporting us.’
The runners had a maximum of eight minutes to run a mile. It took place all day, finishing around 3pm.