PICTURES: Sport Relief

Staff, residents and visitors at Marriott House and Lodge Care Home in Chichester are 'rowing' 701 miles

Staff, residents and visitors at Marriott House and Lodge Care Home in Chichester are 'rowing' 701 miles

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Sport Relief is underway and people across the area are finding all sorts of ways to take part.

The biennial charity event from Comic Relief, in association with BBC Sport, brings together the worlds of sport and entertainment to raise money to help vulnerable people in the UK and the world’s poorest countries.

From left, Julie Gillson, Jenny Hicklin and Margaret Murphy at Twickenham

From left, Julie Gillson, Jenny Hicklin and Margaret Murphy at Twickenham

The event runs from today until Sunday, with a star-studded night of television lined up on BBC One tonight at 7pm.

Staff, residents and visitors at Marriott House and Lodge Care Home in Chichester have been rowing all week, with the aim of completing 701 miles by the time the programme is aired.

Static rowing machines have been in place in the Barchester Healthcare home, in Tollhouse Close, Chichester, since Friday, March 11, and other homes in the group have been ‘virtually visited’ along the way.

Sarah Harding, head of activities, said: “This is being incorporated into their daily activities by staff and residents reminiscing about various places along the way.

“After a bumpy start, whereby one of the rowing machine broke down, Chichester College Gym came to the rescue, lending one of their rowing machines so that we could complete this challenge.”

The static rowers ‘visited’ the Isle of Wight, Jersey and Devon before the long trek back to Chichester, aiming to arrive in time for the appeal evening on television.

Theresa Shell, general manager, said: “This is a massive challenge for us to undertake with the whole home getting involved. We hope to raise lots of money for Sport Relief by the end of the challenge.”

Three Bognor Regis women will be singing for Sport Relief at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park on Sunday, as part of the Games Maker Choir.

They are adding their voices to the nation’s fundraising efforts for the Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Games.

The choir was formed during the London 2012 Olympics by volunteer Victoria Verbi, who wanted to harness the spirit of the 70,000 Games Maker volunteers.

Julie Gillson, Margaret Murphy and Jenny Hicklin are all from Bognor Regis and have been members since November 2012, singing at all the major sporting events since.

Margaret said the first time she stepped onto the hallowed turf of Twickenham was a ‘goosebumps moment’ but every occasion was special.

Jenny said one of her favourite moments was when the choir was invited to record its show reel at the iconic Abbey Road Studios last year.

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