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Wheelbarrow Heroes

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Twelve brave pairs lined up to do battle in Haddenham's wheelbarrow race on a damp Saturday afternoon in June, all in aid of the Finley Newell Mobility and Equipment Fund.

Finley lives in Haddenham and has a rare condition called Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) which means he will never crawl or walk. SMA also affects Finley's arms, hands, head, neck, breathing and swallowing. So, funds raised in the wheelbarrow race will contribute towards the purchase of a Permobil Koala powerchair, enabling Finley to whizz around with his friends, and help make his home accessible for him to explore and wreak havoc just like other 2-year-olds.

On Saturday 13th June, some very willing souls jumped into their fancy dress costumes, grabbed their super-go-fast carriages and off they set, pushing their heavy loads through the streets of Haddenham — one of each pair riding and the other providing the motive power.

And as if the physical demands of pushing a wheelbarrow over a two-mile course weren't enough, at each public house along the route (and there are quite a lot in Haddenham!) contestants were required to down a glass of beer or lager! If you've never experienced the combination of booze and heavy physical exercise, trust us: this is an exhausting combination!

As our photographs show (see Galleries for more) some returning contestants looked very much the worse for wear at the end of the route — physically shattered and a wee bit squiffy!

Congratulations to everyone who helped to organise this wonderful fundraising event, and especially to all the brave contestants.

The fastest round the course were our two pirates, Andy Luckett & Dan Broomham, while the best fancy dress award went to Dell Boy and Granddad, Alan Lewis and Tim Finch, who ultimately failed to achieve class-winning performance despite the aerodynamic sophistication of their trotter-mobile.

The organisers extend their sincere thanks to the landlords of all the Haddenham pubs, and to everyone who helped and supported — particularly Ian Bamford at the Sports and Social Club, Barbara at the Kings Head, Nick Whitney Engineering, Steve Stretton, Gary Leach from Haddenham United FC and Derron from Browns.

Plus a big thank you to all who donated to the fundraising efforts. The event raised an incredible £1,000 for Finley Newell — a truly remarkable achievement.

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