Firemen’s lift for charity in kayak trek

The firefighters with the kayak they will be carrying for charity
The firefighters with the kayak they will be carrying for charity
There are signalling problems on services this morning. Picture: Malcolm Wells

Train services in Portsmouth delayed by signalling fault

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THIS team of hardy firefighters are bracing themselves for a gruelling trek for charity.

The fundraisers will walk 15 miles wearing heavy fire gear and breathing apparatus.

But as if this was not hard enough, the team will be lugging a 70kg klepper kayak along the route.

They will start at Horndean fire station in Blendworth Lane, at 10am, on Saturday, May 20.

It’s part of the fire service’s Cockleshell Challenge which will see a band of firefighters trekking 120 miles through France in memory of Second World War Royal Marines.

Watch manager Craig Sadler from Cosham fire station is organising the event.

He said: ‘It’s definitely going to be a real challenge for the guys.

‘There are going to be about eight of us in full firefighting kit, which weighs about 30kg.

‘It would be great if people could come out and support us along the way.’

It will take firefighters about five hours to march the route from Horndean to Southsea fire station.

Along the way they will stop at high streets in Cosham and Southsea to speak to locals.

And at about 2pm they will pause at the Cockleshell memorial, in Esplanade, for two minutes after walking through the former Royal Marine barracks.

Craig added: ‘We want to pay our respect to the sacrifices made by these brave Royal Marines and to all the sacrifices made by all those who serve in the forces.’

The event is raising cash for The Fire Fighters Charity, the Royal Marines Association and the SBS Association.

It comes ahead of the main Cockleshell Challenge in July, which aims to recreate the escape route by Royal Marines in the Second World War following a daring assault on the French port of Bordeaux.

To get updates on the effort, search ‘Cockleshell Challenge’ on Facebook. To donate, see uk.virginmoneygiving.com/team/CockleshellHeroes5