‘There’s a serious side to off-roading – lending a hand’

RUGGED Off-roading is a popular hobby
RUGGED Off-roading is a popular hobby

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There is more to 4x4 than meets the eye.

We believe they are not just machines that tear up the countryside, but actually help the community.

I have an ex-army land rover and I am a member of Wessex Hillrunners off road club. The club is very family orientated and has a great social side, it is not just about churning up the countryside.

We also do a lot of charity work for Marie Curie Cancer Care which cares for people with terminal illness and researches how to care for people with cancer.

We have a ladies driving day every year in aid of this charity.

One of the most important aspects of our club is the help we provide to the emergency services.

Several members of the club volunteer to be on call for the Hampshire 4x4 response team. They provide their time and their vehicles for assistance to the emergency services, local authorities and other volunteer organisations.

We sometimes meet at quarries for a run around and also do green laning where we drive on both tarmac and off-road grass.

Recently we had an exhibition day to show off some of our vehicles. There were eight static 4x4s at Locks Heath shopping centre and we were very lucky to be joined by the coastguard and fire department who demonstrated the off-road vehicles they use when they are called out on emergencies. Despite the rain, the day went really well and we got a lot of positive responses, and even a few new members.

For more information on the Wessex Hillrunners off road club, come to our monthly meeting every second Thursday at the Boarhunt Social Club, North Boarhunt, PO17 6DD at 8pm.