Portsmouth friends set to abseil Spinnaker Tower in fundraising bid for charity

TWO women are set to abseil from the Spinnaker Tower in a fundraising bid.

By Hollie Busby
Monday, 28th June 2021, 9:41 am
Updated Monday, 28th June 2021, 9:41 am
Tanya Sinclair and Portsmouth student Ellie Lunnen-Kay
Tanya Sinclair and Portsmouth student Ellie Lunnen-Kay

Both Tanya Sinclair and Portsmouth student Ellie Lunnen-Kay will complete the 560ft drop at the landmark in Gunwharf Quays in August.

Tanya, whose parents are both deaf, and Ellie, who suffers from a invisible chronic illness, are raising money for the charity Hearing Dogs for Deaf People.

They say there is a ‘blatant lack of accessibility for those with hearing loss within our society’.

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So far, the pair have raised £250 of their £750 target.

Tanya, a communication support worker for deaf people, said: ‘The challenge is perfect for me as I have deaf parents and a strong link to the deaf community.

‘Rock climbing is one of my favourite hobbies, and I have been looking for a new challenge for a while.

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‘I haven’t done anything to the same scale, but I have done a few abseils both indoor, and outdoor so I am really looking forward to it.’

Criminology with psychology student Ellie, originally from Surrey, wanted to do the challenge with Tanya because of their shared desire to raise awareness for the charity.

The 20-year-old said: ‘For us, the charity’s work is especially close to us. We want people to understand just how difficult accessibility can be for hard-of-hearing people, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic.

‘I am not particularly nervous about the abseil itself, more about how challenging it will be with my illness. But either way, I am super excited and can’t wait to raise more awareness.

‘As with Tanya, I have rock climbed for fun a few times and have done very small abseils, but this will be the biggest one yet!’

The UK charity works to train dogs to alert deaf people to important sounds and danger signals such as smoke alarms, alarm clocks, and doorbells.

The trust says dogs provide confidence and companionship, which are key in reducing the feeling of isolation that deafness can cause.

In a video posted to the pair’s YouTube and Go Fund Me page, Tanya uses British Sign Language to describe their future endeavour to viewers.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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