Portsmouth firefighter celebrates charity success

Jasper Taylor pictured with the firefighters, Mayor Ken Ellcome and his wife Jo, Kerry James from the Firefighter's Charity. Picture: Habibur Rahman
Jasper Taylor pictured with the firefighters, Mayor Ken Ellcome and his wife Jo, Kerry James from the Firefighter's Charity. Picture: Habibur Rahman

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A RETIRING firefighter has raised more than £1,000 for charity.

Jasper Taylor from Southsea Fire Station raised a total of £1,323 for the Lord Mayor’s charities by doing four static cycle rides – covering a distance of 200 miles.

The 60-year-old firefighter, who is retiring next month, held his charity cycles at a number of venues across the city, with Lord Mayor Cllr Ken Ellcome in support.

Jasper says that the fundraiser serves as a fantastic way to round off his storied career.

He said: ‘It was really nice to see everyone who hosted the bike rides, as well as the Lord Mayor himself, at the presentation. We have managed to raise quite a significant amount of money, which we are very pleased with.

‘My final shift is on October 7 – it has come around far too quickly and I have mixed emotions about finishing my career.

‘It has been a career full of different experiences and life lessons – and I have never not wanted to go to work.

‘I suppose I am rather fortunate, in that sense.

‘This is a job where you are a big part of the community and there is a lot of responsibility on your shoulders, and I have thoroughly enjoyed playing my part in that.’

Jasper says that he doesn’t have any specific plans for retirement – but is looking forward to having his weekends back.

He said: ‘I think the biggest thing I am looking forward to is being able to relax on the weekend – it is something I haven’t been able to do for quite some time now.

‘My wife and I have a camper van that hasn’t seen much use yet, so perhaps we shall slip away for a few weekends if the weather holds up.

‘I will still be doing a couple of things for the Firefighter’s Charity – I have been involved with them for so long that I think it would be too difficult to just walk away from it all,’ he added.