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Mayor Dorothy Thornhill and MP Richard Harrington take part in charity abseil
The great and the good of Watford endured a nerve-jangling descent from one of the town’s tallest buildings yesterday, all in the name of charity.
Watford MP Richard Harrington , elected mayor Dorothy Thornhill and Watford Community Housing Trust chief executive Tina Barnard all took the plunge from the top of a Meriden high-rise to help raise funds for The Peace Hospice .
The event was part of the trust’s fifth birthday celebrations which saw all but a few of their 170 staff travel to the estate to either help organise activities or carry out improvement works.
The abseil from the roof of Munden View is intended to raise £50,000 for the Watford charity and has brought together 92 representatives from local businesses and organisations.
Mr Harrington had already raised more than £6,000 when he took the plunge, speaking to the Watford Observer afterwards he said: "The worst bit was just as you go over the top.
"It was exhilarating to do it but I am glad to be back on the ground."
Reflecting on her own jump, Mayor Thornhill said she was expecting something much worse.
She said: "It was better than I had expected it to be, it wasn’t like I’d thought at all.
"It is the trust’s fifth birthday and it is great they have decided to organise this for the Peace Hospice ."
Another of the abseilers was Dan Dark, senior vice president and managing director of Warner Brothers Studios, Leavesden.
He said: "I have done a little bit of abseiling in the past so I don’t feel that daunted.
"It is great to be here, it is always nice to be doing things within the local community.
"The studio has helped to support the Peace Hospice over they years as well as a lot of other local charities and this reinforces how we want to be a part of this community."
Diane Lee, chairman of Watford Community Housing Trust, said the day marked a very successful five years for the organisation.
She said: "We have kept all of our promises and delivered even more.
"I got involved in the trust because it was a really exciting opportunity to give people ownership of their community."
As well as the abseiling, there were activities on offer for residents including a ‘street snooker’ football challenge game and the ‘Watford Wipeout’ using the Sports Legacy equipment already in place.
Rachel Fowler, corporate development manager at the Peace Hospice, said: "The day has turned out really well, there has been a lot of support and a lot of bravery which has been amazing.
"We decided to get a number of companies to send at least one person and that has been really well supported."
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