Members of IV SATT (Small Arms Training Team) have been busy racking up the miles and fundraising in support of Poppy Scotland’s 1921 centenary year Challenge.
The team are hoping to raise £1,921 for the charity through their Just Giving page. Their total currently sits at £1,615 and they are hoping that they can achieve their fundraising goal, with some help from their generous colleagues across the RAF Air Cadets and beyond.
The team took up the Challenge in March, hoping to reach a target of 1,921 miles. This was quickly smashed by the end of April through a combination of cycling, walking and running. A secondary target of 5,005 miles, chosen as the distance from their base at Leuchars station in Fife, to Kohima in India, was achieved by mid-July and the current target is now 8,090 miles, which is the distance from Leuchars to Stanley, Falkland Islands. The team are confident they will make that distance before the Challenge ends on 11 November 21.
There have been some outstanding individual performances to be celebrated, including Team WO, Ally Bidgood (2345 Leuchars Sqn) having completed over 2,111 miles to date himself. Fg Off Peter Brown (1019 City of Stirling Sqn) is king of the long-distance cycles, bagging 101 miles in one ride alone.
The Challenge has not been without incident though. Adjutant, Flt Lt Lorraine Bidgood was left with a broken hand and a badly damaged bike after a crash whilst cycling across the Tay Road Bridge, which left her unable to cycle for eight weeks. Despite this, she hopes to make her personal target of 1,000 miles cycling by the end of September.
The team have split into two groups in a bid to have some healthy inter-unit rivalry. Currently Team 1, led by OC SATT, Sqn Ldr Paul Mathieson have the edge, but Team 2 are snapping at their heels.
OC IV SATT, Sqn Ldr Paul Mathieson said:
“Poppy Scotland is a charity close to all our hearts and the work they do in support of veterans and their families is something we are delighted to support. For me personally, I have been associated with Poppy Scotland for over 30 years and was overwhelmed to receive recognition of this long-service earlier this year.
I couldn’t be prouder of the team in the way they have taken up this fundraising Challenge. Not all of our staff were into regular exercise prior to this, so the Challenge has also helped them to increase their activity levels, which is especially important both for physical and mental health, given the current pandemic situation.”
Donations to IV SATT’s 1921 Poppy Scotland Challenge can be made via the Just Giving link below: