Will's skydive idea to help The Hive

September 30 2021

JUMPING out of a plane and falling more than 3,000m might not be everybody’s idea of fun but four locals are braving it for charity.

Ready for action: The Hive skydivers

They hope to raise more than £5,000 for Kingswood charity The Hive, a drop-in centre for adults with learning disabilities or autism.

The service, which has 200 adults using its drop-in centre, has been badly hit by Covid restrictions, leaving it with a huge income shortfall.

The funds raised will help the drop-in centre keep running and support the gradual reopening of its other sessions, including music, pottery, discos and art.

The four skydivers are Hive member Will Lake, his sister Georgina Lake, Tony Sperring, parent of a Hive member, and The Hive’s Impact Projects Manager, Dominic Box.

The jump will take place on 22 October near Salisbury and the quartet will free fall from the plane at speeds of up to 120 miles per hour before parachuting down to the ground.

Mr Lake, who has been a member of The Hive for seven years, came up with the idea of the skydive.

He said: “It’s something I’ve always wanted to do.

“I watched a lot of videos and that’s what got me interested. It looked like good fun.

“I wanted to fundraise because I wanted to give something to The Hive. It’s a really lovely place to come and socialise with my friends”

Covid restrictions meant the centre had to shut completely for 18 months and is only beginning to reopen now. Many of the adults who use the centre have health conditions that mean they have been shielding and
are keen to keep numbers restricted for now.

Mr Box said: “When Will put the idea to me I thought it was an exciting way to raise both money for The Hive and awareness of our work.

“All the jumpers have generously decided to pay for the jump themselves, so all the money we collect will go straight to the The Hive.”

Ms Lake has stepped in at the last minute after member Chris Butler, who was due to jump, had to pull out because of illness.

CEO Liz Cooke said: “We tried to keep things going over Zoom during the lockdowns, such as music sessions, a weekly quiz and games, and a book club.

“We also had volunteers ringing people up to have a chat. It was a very isolating time for many of the people who attend The Hive.

“We’re beginning to open up, at a speed our members feel comfortable with.

“Our big issue, as well as raising funds to keep us open, is that many of our volunteers left during the pandemic and we need more help to run sessions.

“We provide full training and would love to hear with anyone who’d like to get involved. Anything from sitting with someone and having a chat, to getting involved supporting members during our music, drama or independent living sessions.”

To donate to the fundraiser, go to www.justgiving.com/campaign/jumpingforthehive