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Thursday, 18 September 2014

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Rollercoaster abseil for adventurous vicar

An adventurous vicar and former soldier will abseil from the top of Blackpool’s Big Dipper next month to challenge prejudices and raise money for an Army charity.

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BIG DIPPER: Daredevil priest the Rev Ken Wright checks out the Big Dipper at Blackpool Pleasure Beach which he will abseil down next month to raise money for ABF The Soldiers’ Charity

The Rev Ken Wright will be one of a number of people to climb 420 steps up the rollercoaster and abseil 250ft down it on June 16.

The challenge will raise money for ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, which supports soldiers and ex-soldiers.

It will be a world away from the motorcycling priest’s only previous abseiling experience down a 40ft cliff in Devon years ago.

Mr Wright, of Ruskin Close, High Harrington, is a member of Workington Rotary Club and spotted the challenge in a Rotary magazine.

Having spent about 25 years in the services, including 18 in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, he was keen to support the cause.

He is now chaplain to the Workington Community Hospital and West Cumberland Hospital, Whitehaven, as well as a keen motorcyclist.

He said: “I enjoy breaking prejudices and I don’t want to be put in a pigeon hole. While I can I will, because if you don’t do it now when will you do it?

“I’m doing some of the things I couldn’t afford to do when I was 26. Now I’m 76 I can afford them. My life insurance has paid up so it’s all right. I’m looking forward to it.”

He will be supported on the day by his wife Grace and is preparing by visiting the gym regularly to keep his strength up.

He has almost raised the £500 minimum needed to take part in the jump but is keen to raise as much as possible for the cause.

To donate, visit www.justgiving.com/Rev-Ken

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