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Daring Felixstowe man, 91, prepares to abseil down Ipswich Hospital’s maternity block in Spiderman suit

PUBLISHED: 17:00 25 May 2017 | UPDATED: 06:18 26 May 2017

John Morley is preparing to scale the maternity block at Ipswich Hospital to collect cash for the hospital charity.
He is the oldest person to do it this year, and plans to do it in a spiderman costume. Picture: GREGG BROWN

John Morley is preparing to scale the maternity block at Ipswich Hospital to collect cash for the hospital charity. He is the oldest person to do it this year, and plans to do it in a spiderman costume. Picture: GREGG BROWN

A 91-year-old man from Suffolk is gearing up to take an 120ft charity plunge down Ipswich Hospital’s maternity block – a challenge he hopes to complete in his Spiderman suit.

John Morley is preparing to scale the maternity block at Ipswich Hospital to collect cash for the hospital charity.
He is the oldest person to do it this year, and plans to do it in a spiderman costume. Picture: GREGG BROWNJohn Morley is preparing to scale the maternity block at Ipswich Hospital to collect cash for the hospital charity. He is the oldest person to do it this year, and plans to do it in a spiderman costume. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Felixstowe man John Morley is to attempt the feat in front of hundreds of spectators this Saturday to collect cash for the hospital charity.

Nurses and doctors there have cared for him for almost 20 years, and he said this is how he wants to thank them.

This is not the first time John has risen to the challenge – back in 2011 he managed to raise hundreds of pounds for charity with the feat.

Now he hopes to smash that total – and top £1,000 this time around.

Scaling new heights: Brave members of the public took the plunge at Ipswich Hospital back in 2011 - the event is back this year. Picture: LUCY TAYLORScaling new heights: Brave members of the public took the plunge at Ipswich Hospital back in 2011 - the event is back this year. Picture: LUCY TAYLOR

He said: “I’m not at all nervous, quite the contrary.

“I want to give back to the people who have helped me through my illness in style – so I will be doing the abseil in my Spiderman suit. The hardest part is when you get up on the roof and realise how far up you are.

The 91-year-old added: “It’s a great thing to do and I want to do it while I’m still healthy enough to do so. I raised £800 last time but this time I want to get up to about £1,000 if I can.”

John will join nearly 200 daredevils taking part in the challenge, which is returning for the first time in six years, over the bank holiday weekend.

John Morley is preparing to scale the maternity block at Ipswich Hospital to collect cash for the hospital charity.
He is the oldest person to do it this year, and plans to do it in a spiderman costume. Picture: GREGG BROWNJohn Morley is preparing to scale the maternity block at Ipswich Hospital to collect cash for the hospital charity. He is the oldest person to do it this year, and plans to do it in a spiderman costume. Picture: GREGG BROWN

Together, they hope to raise more than £20,000 for Ipswich Hospital.

Organisers believe the total amount will increase to around £30,000 by the time all of the donations have been collected.

Fellow participant Emma Pritchard has decided to raise money for the Children’s Angel Appeal to say thank you for the care her son has received.

She said: “Since my son was diagnosed with a blood clotting disorder, the department has provided so much ongoing support and guidance with how to deal with this. I wanted to show that I appreciate all the help as it’s been amazing.”

Head of charity and fundraising Mandy Jordan said: “We are incredibly grateful to everyone who is taking part in our popular abseil and has already raised such a fantastic sum for our hospital.”

Watch the challenge in action by visiting the hospital on Saturday from 10am-5pm, and on Sunday and Monday from 10am-3pm.

• Keep an eye out for more photos and videos of participants completing the challenge on our homepage over the weekend.


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