Saturday, April 28, 2012

Lighting the Lakes

Early this morning, 2am to be precise, I woke up and got ready to take part in the Light the Lakes event.  This was an event put on by Surrey Police aiming to raise money by lighting up the 214 Wainwright peaks.  The following is from the Surrey Police website and gives a full explanation:
Last year, the Surrey Police family was left devastated after the tragic murder of one of our colleagues - Detective Constable Heather Cooper who was just 33 years old. She was a mother of two, a respected and well-liked colleague and a professional police officer. Heather epitomised everything the police service stands for as a dedicated detective working in public protection investigation.
This tragedy left Heather’s two very young children without the love, counsel and guidance of their mother and in an attempt to do something positive, Surrey Police Federation has raised an appeal fund for her children, Joshua and Isobelle, who are now being cared for by Heather’s family. All the money raised will be placed into a trust fund towards their future and education.
The aim of the challenge is for every team to switch on a light at the summit of each peak at 4.30am in memory of our late colleague to raise some additional funds in the process. This will be the final fund raising event before the appeal ends in June.
Chair of Surrey Police Federation, Kieran Diamond, said: “This is the largest of all the fundraising events that have being taking place over the last nine months and the support from both colleagues within the emergency services and the public has been absolutely outstanding.
“So far we have raised £38,000 for the fund and the response we have had is a wonderful tribute to Heather and everything she stood for.”
If anyone would like to make a donation to the appeal fund, please visit the ‘Light the Lakes’ page on Face Book at or call Surrey Police Federation on 01483 638155/632098.

When it came to choosing a fell to light up, I opted my old favourite, Sale Fell.  Setting off from my house at 3am, we were at the parking place at about 3.30am.  Headtorches at the ready (as well as gloves and hat - brrrr) we set off along the familiar route.

Jonathan demonstrating poor headtorch etiquette, "MY EYES!!"
toughest part of the walk, taking a picture in the dark without the flash making the subject close their eyes


We got to this wall at about 3.50am and decided to hang out for a little bit rather than get to the top too early.  We actually got to the top at 4am.  Good time to text the organiser to say that we have set off (obviously a better time would have been when we actually set off, oops!)

It was really cold on the top, biting cold wind.  Half an hour is a long time to spend stood around on the top of a fell in the freezing cold.  We walked back down halfway to the wall and then back up to the top.  The instructions were, lights out at 4.20am and then a co-ordinated big light up at 4.30am.  We spotted a light on Skiddaw, and perhaps one on Lords Seat but to be honest, I think the timing was a bit late and it wasn't all that dark at 4.30am

our 'beacon' some sparklers and a headtorch.  We were careful to collect all the stray matches and used sparklers.

time to head back down.  Light coming in from the east as we descend

towards Bassenthwaite and Binsey

from the seat by the church

back at the gate, another text to say that we are safe and off we go

Make a donation to the Light the Lakes fund here

1 comment:

  1. What a great task, memorial and fundraiser. Nice post Paul.