Portsmouth police officers set to pull 1.5 tonne squad car at Great South Run

A CHANCE encounter in a supermarket has resulted in a team of police officers training to pull a squad car in the Great South Run.

Tuesday, 20th August 2019, 7:00 am
Updated Tuesday, 20th August 2019, 2:07 pm

Cosham officer Geoff Speak was on the hunt for some doughnuts when he ran into a seven-year-old girl who told him she was celebrating not having cancer any more.

A speechless Geoff gave her a high-five before chatting with the family, who said the young girl had just been given the all-clear.

‘I was moved by the strength and resolve of this young lady and her family who were overwhelmed with joy and the opportunity to have more time together,’ said Geoff, who is a father himself.

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Acting Sgt Arron Taylor, left, and PC Geoff Speak will be pulling a police car in aid of charity during the Great South Run. Picture: Chris Moorhouse (190819-55)

‘Fast forward a few months and I got to thinking "What could be done that encompasses my love of fitness, my slightly deranged mindset and would also be a spectacle that would encourage people to get involved?"’

Before long, Operation Pulled Pork was created: three police officers will be pulling a marked car for 10 miles on October 20 to raise as much money as possible for Children With Cancer UK.

Geoff roped in colleagues Arron Taylor and Connor Waters to help pull the car weighing one and a half tonnes, with PC Christi Hill behind the wheel helping to steer them to the finish line.

The feat, which has never before been seen at Portsmouth’s Great South Run, must be completed within a time limit of two hours and 50 minutes, requiring some intense training.

From left, PC Christi Hill, Acting Sgt Arron Taylor and PC Geoff Speak Picture: Chris Moorhouse (190819-51)

Geoff said: ‘I don’t think I gave it enough credit for the amount of work that was going to be involved but I wouldn’t change it for the world.’

Driver Christi added: ‘They’re so committed, in the hot weather they were pulling the car in 27 degrees and the tarmac was melting.’

So far, Operation Pulled Pork has received support of more than £2,000 for the charity, but are hoping this challenge can pull in enough donations to reach £10,000.

Geoff said: ‘While we have got an opportunity to raise money and give these families more time together then why not?’

Visit justgiving.com/fundraising/OPP to donate to the dedicated team.