Two colleagues from a Cheshire crematorium managed to ‘survive the wild’ last month and raised more than £1,200 for St Luke’s Hospice.
Dave Haslam and Sophie Scott enjoyed – and at times endured – an outdoor adventure experience to raise vital funds for the hospice, also based in Cheshire.
The daring duo both work at Vale Royal Crematorium, near Northwich, part of Westerleigh Group, the UK’s largest independent owner-operator of crematoria and cemeteries, with 35 sites across England, Scotland and Wales, all set within beautifully-landscaped gardens of remembrance which provide pleasant, peaceful places for people to visit and reflect.
They were among a group of fund-raisers who ran wild over the Lake District for two days in September, taking part in a range of physical challenges including abseiling a quarry, canyoning, cliff jumping, scrambling and tackling a Tyrolean zipwire.
Crematorium Manager Dave and Crematorium Assistant Sophie both said they enjoyed the experience so much that they would love to do it again.
Dave said: “We both really enjoyed it and had a great time challenging ourselves while meeting new people. We’re both really proud of being able to raise over £1,000, while also stepping outside of our comfort zones and completing all the challenges.”
Dave said he enjoyed the water jumps most, while for Sophie, the scrambling was the highlight.
She said: “I found it extremely challenging and, at times, scary, but when we got halfway up and I was able to stop and look around, it was amazing to see how far we had come, which encouraged me to carry on. It gave me a huge sense of achievement.
“I was expecting it to be challenging but I actually found myself enjoying it far more than I thought I would. I loved all of it from start to finish.”
Dave added: “It was different than I expected. The scramble involved steeper inclines than I was prepared for, the abseiling was a doddle and the water section was a bigger challenge than I was prepared for.
“St Luke’s Hospice is recognised and supported heavily in the local area and when the crematorium opened in 2014, we quickly came to appreciate how important this organisation is to Northwich and surrounding areas, providing palliative care to local people.
“Nearly 85% of their care is funded by donations, but like many charities their income has been affected by the pandemic. It’s an honour for us to be able to support a local organisation which provides such valuable support to people when they need it most.”
The experience has certainly inspired them to want to do more fund-raising, and they say they are open to suggestions as to what they might do next.
Sophie is favouring a bungee jump while Dave would prefer to abseil “off a very tall building – but not too tall!”
Debra Sloan, Events Fundraiser at St Luke’s Hospice, said: “We’re so delighted that Dave and Sophie joined ‘Team St Luke’s’ on Survive the Wild.
“It’s great that not only did they enjoy the event but were also personally challenged while raising an amazing amount for our Hospice.
“They have been huge supporters of the Hospice for some time and we are continually grateful to Dave, Sophie and the team at Vale Royal Crematorium.”