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Captain Gemma motivates for the Gherkin Challenge 2019 

Gemma

Our energetic team captain for the NFU Mutual Ashford, Tenterden and Whitfield Gherkineers is Gemma Jeffrey. She is looking forward to motivating her team to the top of London’s famous Gherkin. A fundraising aficionado, she knows that the greatest part of the challenge is raising the money. She hopes to gain plenty of support for the team's fundraising efforts. This money will help the NSPCC’s ‘speak out stay safe programme’ reach 83 primary school children, providing them with the knowledge to protect themselves from abuse. 

The challenge is a race to the top of London’s famous Gherkin, climbing 1,037 steps over 38 floors, under their own power. 

Gemma is incredibly competitive, usually swimming twice per week and running three times per week. Some of this is hill climbing and she knows she will not need to add any additional training for this event. With her competitiveness and experience you would believe she would be heading for the world record target of 4 minutes 38 seconds but she says “so long as we are under an hour, but I’m hoping for between 30-45 mins, it really depends on the others. As much as they would be eating my dust, we have decided that we are a team and we must go up the stairs as a team, so, unfortunately, we are only as slow as our weakest member, Wes”.

Gemma has run the Race 4 Life multiple times and 4 years ago she raised £1,000 for the Erskine Hospital in Glasgow, running the Lydd half marathon. She also raised money for Aspire, swimming 22 miles in 12 weeks and over the years has helped to arrange Macmillan Coffee mornings. She has even walked 18 miles from Dover to Canterbury for Alzheimer’s Society.

With all this experience, there is no wonder about why she was elected team captain. Amongst all the jovial ribbing and competition among the team members, Gemma says her key take home from the event will be “just the joy of motivating my team members and making sure they stay on track up those stairs”.

Gemma’s Fun Fact is “I am currently the first female, and youngest serving chair of my running club, Canterbury Harriers, I’m pretty proud of that!”

Please show the team some support by visiting their Just Giving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/nfugherkineers

Helpful Wes drafted into the Gherkin Challenge 2019

wes

Wesley Beddows commonly called Helpful Wes around the NFU Mutual Ashford office, has agreed to take part in the NSPCC Gherkin Challenge. True to name true to nature you would assume but sadly he was unfortunate enough to be standing next to our energetic team captain, Gemma Jeffrey, at the wrong time when he was drafted on to the team. 

Helpful Wes has said “I don’t think I've got a sweat on since school” and true to this statement, his only training ahead of the fundraiser will be to take the stairs tobed every night. The biggest challenge for our dear Helpful Wes will certainly be physical exertion and other than raising a suitably large amount for the NSPCC charity, he believes his key take home will be “severe cramp I'd imagine”. 

Wes is going to stick to running alongside team mate Guesty during the challenge. He said “Gemma runs 5k’s for fun every week, and Vice-Captain, Doug, is on a fitness trip at the moment, maybe I’ll keep pace with Guesty then sprint the last flight?” He is looking forward to a few pints to recover and motivate him to get to the top as quickly as possible. 

One thing is certain, he agrees with Vice-Captain and our fearless leader, Doug Jackson’s comment, “he had better beat me or he wouldn’t hear the end of it. He trains at Cross-fit three times a week, I do nothing!” 

Wes is at least hoping to complete the challenge in minutes and not hours though, perhaps our Vice-Captain may need to rethink his under 4 hours target if he intends on getting ahead?

With the sheer lack of preparations and the inevitable pain Helpful Wes will experience, he is hoping to raise as much as possible for the cause and will be asking everyone he has sponsored in the past to contribute, no matter how small, every penny raised will be put to good use in protecting children from abuse. 

Wes’ fun fact is he was junior chess champion when he was 12, for what he lacks in athleticism he makes up for in strategic thinking, let’s see if he will get to the top first. 

Please show the team some support by visiting their Just Giving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/nfugherkineers

 

Agent, Doug Jackson takes Vice-Captaincy for the Gherkin Challenge 2019

Doug ChallengeKeen on a challenge, 38 floors of running is certainly a new one to the team. Doug decided it was his turn to get fundraising and after numerous years sponsoring others, he is looking for people to return the favour to support his cause.

All he knows about the challenge is it is 38 floors of vertical running, and “It is going to hurt… a lot”, with this in mind, he is looking to achieve a great deal of fundraising in aid of the NSPCC.

All Gherkineers are asked to raise a target of £250 per entrant, this money will help the NSPCC’s ‘speak out stay safe programme’ reach 83 primary school children, providing them with the knowledge to protect themselves from abuse. The NFU Mutual Gherkineers have set a personal target of £2,500 and have raised almost half the amount so far. 

This is not the only challenge our fearless leader and Vice-Captain has in store, he is currently training for a Cross-fit competition and a 10k run in September. He has also started box jumping and can already jump 30 inches high. We are sure this is going to come in handy on the day.

Even though he appears to be preparing for the challenge, he is not looking to set any world records for 2019 but remains hopeful to finish in under 4 hours. With the reduced target you would think he is intending to keep pace with the team but he has stated “I have got to beat Helpful Wes or else I will never hear the end of it.” Competition between the team members could be brewing. 

Doug is remaining teetotal as part of his continued training and plans to recover with just a glass of water and probably lunch somewhere really bad… did he mean healthy? We will let you decide!

Doug says his fun fact is he “has never run up the Gherkin” but we think it should be that he is super springy, we are sure he will be bounding up those stairs when the time comes!

Read more about the challenge and how the team was gathered in Guesty’s NSPCC Gherkin challenge. 

Please show the team some support by visiting their Just Giving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/nfugherkineers

Guesty’s NSPCC Gherkin Challenge 2019

Stuart GuestAfter browsing for a new contest, Stuart (Guesty) stumbled upon the Gherkin Challenge in aid of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC). The challenge is a race to the top of London’s famous Gherkin, climbing 1,037 steps over 38 floors, without using the lift!

All Gherkineers are asked to raise a target of £250 per entrant, this money will help the NSPCC’s “speak out stay safe programme” reach 83 primary school children, providing them with the knowledge to protect themselves from abuse. 

Stuart Guest was quick to round up a team among our NFU Mutual agency at Ashford, Tenterden & Whitfield. Pulling in Gemma Jeffrey as their enthusiastic Captain and quickly drafting two further team members, our fearless leader and Vice-Captain, Douglas Jackson and the ever Helpful Wesley Beddows.

Guesty says “It would be cool if I can raise £500 but with so many great charities out there, it can be difficult to obtain support but please, give me your money!”

As all who meet him know, Guesty “used to work in the city” and is an avid squash player twice a week, although he has recently stepped down his training due to his current back injuries, he knows this will be a test on his physique but is looking forward to getting to the top to see the wonderful views of the capital. The main take away will be “to raise a good amount for the charity” and to “take advantage of their on hand masseuse”.

We asked Guesty what time he is planning to complete his climb to the top. He says he is sure the fastest time of 4 minutes 18 seconds will be a challenge so he is planning to stick together as a team to support one another but he would like to achieve it in “sub 10 minutes, let’s not prolong the pain!”

Guesty is a regular fundraiser, having taken part in several 24 hour squash tournaments, exertive sports are his thing but he likes to mix it up a bit and this is certainly different to anything he has done before. He is currently clocking in additional steps during his lunch break at our NFU Mutual Ashford agency in the Invicta Business Centre but also plans to run up the Hastings Old Town Steps and to hit the Stairmaster in his local gym. 

Guesty’s fun fact about himself is “I am actually scared of heights!” Well we shall wish him luck and hope he is still enamoured with the views of the capital from 38 floors! 

Please show the team some support by visiting their Just Giving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/nfugherkineers