Wiltshire Publications

Westbury event for the Wooden Spoon Challenge to help disadvantaged youngsters

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Rugby’s Wooden Spoon charity has announced it hopes to raise at least £200,000 from its fund raising series of rugby games, with teams including players from Wiltshire and Dorset, on Mount Everest between 13th April and 6th May. 

To help raise funds, Bob Musker of The Horse and Groom, Westbury, will be staging a Calcutta Lunch on March 16th, with bidding during the event for a signed shirt worn by England legend Rory Underwood and size 14 boots signed by England and British Lions player Simon Shaw. Bidding will also take place for a rugby ball signed by Wales star Shane Williams, and 111 times capped England star player Tamara Taylor. The event is already a sell out.

The money is needed to continue the Wooden Spoon determination to aid disadvantaged and disabled children throughout the United Kingdom and Ireland. Since its formation in 1983 the fund has raised £26million, which has aided more than one million young people.

New Dorset and Wiltshire Wooden Spoon chairman, Justin Cliff said,  “It is a colossal achievement and is a goal we wish to continue with, especially in our case for the children in need in our two counties.We wish to help youngsters mount horses with more ease when enjoying the support given to them at Riding for the Disabled at Tisbury, on the border of the two counties, and to provide special equipment to enable young wheelchair users to enjoy Dorset beaches and also use special surfboards to enable them to enjoy surfing on some areas of the coastline.”

The Everest team players will stay in a dedicated base camp to the north of Everest. Former professional rugby players, others from regional clubs, women players and those like Vivienne  Worrall, who is only just learning to play rugby to enable her to take part are already preparing for the event. Their base camp will be in Tibet and as a result, all the players will have to initially  trek 12 miles to the site, which is situated at 5,364 metres, before eventually continuing to  to the advanced camp at 1, 310 metres.

Vivienne Worrall and partner John Curtis  will join up with ex-British Lions Shane Williams, Lee Mears, plus England Women’s International Tamara Taylor, ex-England Sevens Captain Ollie Phillips;  together they will participate in  two Guinness World Record Attempts as part of a 25 person squad: one game will be “full contact” rugby, and the other, “touch” rugby.

Vivienne and John are already undertaking rigorous training, in the Lake District and on Ben Nevis,  together with altitude training, and youngsters of North Dorset RFC  have together challenged  the couple’s skills and prowess.

Justin Cliff said, “So many people are helping and we would like to express a very deep debt of gratitude.”

Online donations for the event may be made via www.virgingivingmoney. com/JohnCurtis15 or text EVEREST VIV10.

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