The only way is down as abseilers raise Rowans cash

I've done it ! - says Jo Kimber (23) with her daughter Sophie Colpitts (16 months) Jo did the abseil in memory of her grand-father who passed away in The Rowans.  Picture: Malcolm Wells (121744-5438)
I've done it ! - says Jo Kimber (23) with her daughter Sophie Colpitts (16 months) Jo did the abseil in memory of her grand-father who passed away in The Rowans. Picture: Malcolm Wells (121744-5438)
Blood donation centres such as this one will now be more accessible for gay and transgender people

NATIONAL: Fewer restrictions for gay men donating blood

0
Have your say

PEERING over the edge on a 200ft high building, Jo Kimber knew there was only one thing left to do.

And that was to get back down to earth and raise money for the Rowans Hospice along the way.

Although she was feeling nervous at the event, at Millgate House, Portsea, the memory of her grandad Ernest Doyle helped her along.

Jo, 24, of Lower Derby Road, Stamshaw, said: ‘It was daunting.

‘I think it’s when you look over the edge and you realise you’re hanging from a rope and there’s no going back.

‘But doing the abseil meant something to the family because The Rowans took good care of my grandad.’

Mr Doyle had stayed in the Purbrook hospice twice, before he died due to colon cancer in 1999.

Jo, a deputy manager for Co-op, said: ‘We want to support them because they supported us.

‘It’s a way of saying thank you and I’ve raised £150 for them.’

Jo joined 170 other people in the charity event, which started at 11am and went on to 5pm.

Refreshments were provided by residents.

Kerry Owens, 41, of Hayling Island, and her niece Ashleigh Jenkins, 10, of Havant, also took part.

Ashleigh said: ‘I was nervous beforehand, but I was really looking forward to it too.’

Among the abseilers was Daring Doris Long of Hayling Island – who broke her own world record for being the oldest person to do the stunt at the age of 98.

Doris said: ‘I really enjoyed it – I’m becoming a bit of a regular as I have done it for the 12th time.

‘I’m really looking forward to doing it when I’m 100.

‘I just love seeing the view from the top and looking at Portsmouth, it’s amazing.’

The event raises funds for the hospice, which provides palliative care to people with terminal illnesses.

People who signed up for the abseil were asked to raise £100 – but many have raised much more than that.

Ali George, events fundraiser for the hospice, organised the abseil and thanked those who took part in the event on Saturday.

She said: ‘The residents of Millgate House were fantastic.

‘They put on refreshments for people, with money coming back to us.

‘Some residents would open their windows and wave and support the abseilers coming down.

‘And the abseilers were magnificent to take part and raise the money – we cannot thank them enough.’