plane

I strapped myself to an airborne plane for SARSAS

Have you ever wondered what it feels like for those people who attach themselves to the wing of a plane and perform acrobatics in the sky? Wonder no more! Our awesome supporter, Wayne, strapped himself to the wing of a 1940’s bi-plane to raise money for SARSAS...

“Last week I took on one of the scariest challenges of my life. Without a doubt the most intense adrenaline rush I have ever experienced! Completely surpassed, however, by the events of today, for which I was completely unprepared. This aerobatic flight made the first one seem like a leisurely country drive in a convertible Morris Minor. The first one was mostly excitement with some terror, the second was the other way round. Professional Wing Walker Emma pulled the straps on me VERY tight before take-off and I did wonder if that was a bad sign. I have to admit it was a little too much for me. We were much higher (about 2000ft), much faster (135mph) and the G forces much more extreme.

During the negative G dives, I had difficulty keeping my feet on the wing. Although much further away, the ground came rushing up to meet us much faster and the wind almost tore my goggles off with a terrifying roar. As we approached the top of the loop it felt like I was falling over backward as the earth rotated to a position above my head. “No. NO! This feels so wrong!” I thought to myself. The violent G forces were juxtaposed with the weightlessness of the stall turns. (This is where the aeroplane climbs vertically until all momentum is lost, and then flips over sideways and dives back towards the ground.)

After all this, I felt like throwing in the towel and giving Brian the thumbs-down to land. But I decided to stick it out. Next came the same manoeuvres as on the first flight, but much harder and faster. Aggressive, vertical turns and roller-coaster dips and dives. Just as I was thinking “I really can’t take any more of this” the landing strip came into view, the engine throttled back to idle and the wheels touched the ground. I said to Emma “How you manage to do this for a job I will never know!” I think I will stick to drinking beer from the safety of my sofa.

I think I must be crazy but then I remember why I am doing this – this is for all the victim-survivors who make the incredibly difficult and brave decision to pick up the phone to SARSAS – and ask for the help they need and deserve. Nothing can ever undo sexual violence, but SARSAS can help enormously in the process so that all victim-survivors can recover, heal and move on with their lives.”

Such an incredible achievement, Wayne. All of us, at SARSAS, are in awe!

If you would like to support our work with a fundraising challenge but don’t know where to start, visit our fundraising page and contact the team.

The latest from our news and blogs

Hollyoaks-JJ-and-Frankie-@Limepictures

Spotlight behind Hollyoaks sibling sexual abuse (SSA) storyline

For this blog, we’re joined by Tanith McCulloch, SARSAS Sibling Sexual Abuse Project Officer, as we go behind the scenes (and the screens!) to talk about our decision to work with Hollyoaks to help bring the message of sibling sexual abuse to a brand new audience.

A mother and daughter are sitting on a blue sofa in a living room. The girl is looking at a laptop on her knee and the mother is looking at the camera.

Campaign to include protections for women & girls in the Online Safety Act 2023 (Part 1)

Online violence against women and girls is a striking issue in the UK, with many people largely unaware of the abuse perpetrated online.

Somatic therapy

Somatic Therapy: connecting body and mind

Healing from any kind of trauma can be a challenging process. However, there are many techniques that people might find beneficial to explore as part of their healing journey.