Jumping out of an aeroplane at 12,000ft may not be everyone’s cup of tea for a birthday present, but for one employee from Persimmon Homes Wessex it proved to be a fundraising adventure.
Liz Brooke decided that she could not let her 40th birthday pass by quietly and decided to fulfil a long-held dream.
She said: “When my parents asked me what I wanted for my birthday, I must admit they did look a bit shocked when I said a tandem skydive, but it has been fantastic.”
Liz decided it would be great to not only do the skydive to mark her 40th birthday but also raise money for charity.
Persimmon Homes Wessex has chosen the Rainbow Trust as its charity of the year, which provides emotional and practical support that is individually tailored to families who have a child with a life-threatening or terminal illness.
Liz set up a just giving page with a target of raising £300. So far she has raised £345 and is still counting.
The group marketing administrator said she got a taste for extreme sports after doing a 216m bungee jump at Bloukrans, in South Africa.
She said: “I was living and working in South Africa in 2003 and decided to try this bungee jump as it is one of the biggest you can do. I thoroughly enjoyed it and since then have always had a tandem skydive in the back of my mind. It seemed like a great idea and I have just been waiting for the perfect reason to do it.”
Liz, who went to Netheravon, near Andover, for her skydive, added: “We underwent training when we arrived at the airfield before getting into the plane. It took about 15 minutes to climb to 12,000ft but I was not nearly as nervous as I thought I would be, even when the instructor was edging towards the door.
“Once we jumped out, the main chute deployed at about 5,000ft which took about 45 seconds to reach. I did not know if it would feel fast or slow but it was very fast and incredibly exhilarating; it is the only way I can describe it.
“It took about 15 minutes to climb to 12,000ft but only five minutes to get down. I would definitely recommend it and would love to do another one.”
Liz is now looking ahead to her next adrenalin adventure and has her sights set on Europe’s longest zip wire ride in Snowdonia.
To make a donation to The Rainbow Trust visit http://www.justgiving.com/Liz-Brooke1