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Great-grandma jumps for life-saving team

With Beccles below

With Beccles below

A great-grandmother has jumped 13,000ft out of a plane to raise funds for a volunteer life-saving team.

On the PlaneOn the Plane

Judi Ackland-Snow, who is the president of Beccles Indoor Bowls Club, completed the tandem skydive at Ellough Airfield last Friday.

She was due to jump the previous week, but the poor weather conditions meant her fundraiser had to be delayed.

The 79-year-old, who said she “thoroughly enjoyed” the experience, looks set to raise around £1,000 for the Beccles and Bungay First Responders.

She said: “I wasn’t nervous at all and the instructor I had was wonderful. I think he was quite amazed at how calm I was.

“It was wonderful and I could see Beccles, the sea and the surrounding areas.

“And it is amazing the amount of money we have raised. I’ve had money coming in left, right and centre.”

As president, Mrs Ackland-Snow chose the charity to be supported by the club for the year, and further fundraising events are being held, with a quiz night at the bowls club tomorrow and a fun games night and raffle on February 11. The final amount will then be presented to the First Responders in March.

Beccles and Bungay First Responders are made up entirely of community volunteers who are dispatched by the ambulance service to urgent 999 calls anywhere within three miles of the two towns. Though the volunteers are trained by the NHS and operate under the East of England Ambulance NHS Trust, they don’t receive any funding from the healthcare giant. This means the cost of their clothing and kits have to be paid for by donations or the group itself.

Mrs Ackland-Snow said: “The group is self-funded and my husband worked for the London Ambulance Service for 32 years, so I think this kind of service is really necessary. It’s a great cause and anyone at any time could need their help. They’re on call for anyone who ever needs it.”

She also praised the team at UK Parachuting for all their support.

Anyone who would still like to sponsor Mrs Ackland-Snow can do so at the club or call 01502 713549.

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