Determined dad vows to make a big difference

WALK From left: Martyn Ford, Paul Hutchinson, Dan Blanchard, Iain Bevan, Dave Morrison and Andy White, who took part in the Three Peaks Challenge
WALK From left: Martyn Ford, Paul Hutchinson, Dan Blanchard, Iain Bevan, Dave Morrison and Andy White, who took part in the Three Peaks Challenge

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Being a father comes with its fair share of responsibilities.

And Paul Hutchinson knows that all too well – his daughters Abigail, 13, Ellis, 21, and Emma, 23, were all diagnosed with cystic fibrosis two-and-a-half years ago.

Now in a bid to make a difference to their lives, he has raised £800 for The Cystic Fibrosis Trust, which is trying to find a cure for the condition.

Paul, 45, who lives with his daughters and wife Andrea, 42, in Copnor, Portsmouth, got the cash together because he was part of the team which took up The Three Peaks Challenge.

It involves climbing up and going back down Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike and Snowdown in the space of 24 hours.

Paul’s role was to drive the team, which were made up of his colleagues from air conditioning firm Daikin, to each of the mountains.

He also had to stay up for the duration to prepare food and make sure everyone was warm and in good spirits.

The event on Wednesday, June 26, was organised by The Fire Fighters Charity.

Paul says he was pleasantly surprised by the amount he managed to raise.

‘I was surprised I managed to raise that much, especially because of the economic times we live in,’ he says.

‘Though I wasn’t doing the climbing, it was still exhausting keeping awake and focused and driving the team to each place.

‘We all agreed that we wanted to do a challenge like this in aid of charity, and my colleagues suggested the Cystic Fibrosis Trust because my daughters had been diagnosed with the disease.’

Cystic fibrosis is a recessive genetic disorder that harms organs in the body.

Talking about what life is like having family members with the condition, Paul says: ‘It’s a nightmare.

‘It’s just the fear of the unknown.

‘You can’t book holidays or anything in case someone falls ill.

‘But it doesn’t make me love my daughters any less– far from it.

‘It makes me feel guilty knowing I’ve given something like this to them.

‘I just want to find a cure.’

This was the first time Paul had done something to raise money for the trust.

He previously made a donation when his wife had a charity fun day at her place of work – Affinion International, Portsmouth.

Paul is considering doing a sponsored cycle ride and a 30-mile march in 30 hours with the Royal Marines at a later date.