Hanging by a thread – top cops to take part in charity abseil


On Sunday 11 September, Sussex Police & Crime Commissioner, (PCC) Katy Bourne, and Chief Constable of Sussex Police, Giles York, are to abseil 115ft down Peacehaven cliffs for Worthing-based charity, The Queen Alexandra Hospital Home (QAHH).

The abseil is a sponsored challenge event in aid of QAHH, which cares for disabled ex-Servicemen and women. Mrs Bourne, Mr York and the other participants will get a bird’s eye view of the channel from the top, before descending down the spectacular chalk cliff face on to the seafront below.

Commenting on why she is doing the charity abseil, Mrs Bourne said: “I was honoured to be asked to help raise money for such a wonderful organisation.

“As the wife of a Falklands veteran, and the granddaughter of a First World War soldier of the Royal Sussex Regiment, showing support for all the men and women who serve our country is close to my heart.

“Like many people I am deeply saddened by the life changing injuries that many service men and women sustain from the traumas of war.

“I have never abseiled before but I’m looking forward to the challenge. This is a great opportunity to raise money to support the QAHH whilst helping to publicise the tremendous work of this charity. “

The PCC upped the stakes by inviting Chief Constable, Giles York, to abseil simultaneously down the cliff with her.

Mr York said: “I am absolutely thrilled to be taking part in this challenge and look forward to raising as much money as possible for QAHH.

“Sussex Police has a large number of staff and officers with military connections and with this year commemorating the centenary of the Battle of the Somme I think that serves as a poignant reminder that we can all give something back

“Here’s hoping we can also help raise the charity’s profile as high as the Peacehaven cliffs!”

QAHH Head of Fundraising, Elizabeth Baxter, said: “I would like to thank Mrs Bourne and Mr York for so kindly agreeing to do this in aid of The Queen Alexandra Hospital Home, and I send our heartfelt thanks on behalf of all the staff and residents. Needless to say their participation in the abseil will not only help publicise the event and encourage others to take part, but it will also create awareness of QAHH and the care we provide to disabled ex-Servicemen and women.”

Absolutely no experience is needed to take part in the abseil; just a sense of adventure, a head for heights and nerves of steel!

Elizabeth continued, “We’d love to see more teams of friends and families sign up, or even colleagues, as this event could provide a great team-building opportunity for local businesses and organisations whilst at the same time raising vital funds for our work, caring for disabled veterans.”

Since 1919, QAHH has provided the highest possible standard of care and rehabilitation to our country’s disabled ex-Servicemen and women. QAHH specialises in care for those with brain injuries, neurological conditions, spinal injuries and those who have lost limbs. The Hospital Home provides services such as nursing, physiotherapy, occupational therapy, and speech and language therapy in order to help rehabilitate those that live there, with the hope that they can live more mobile and independent lives.

QAHH receives no government funding and this year must raise £1.3 million to deliver the high quality care that our country’s veterans need and deserve, which is why money raised by events such as the Peacehaven Cliffs Abseil is vital for the charity.

Places must be booked in advance, and the registration fee is £25 per person. Participants are also asked to try to raise a minimum of £100 in sponsorship.

For further information on this event, or to sign up, please contact event organiser, Samantha Stokes, by emailing samantha-stokes@qahh.org.uk or calling 01903 218444.

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