On Friday 15th March, 74-year-old Mayor of St Helens, Councillor Pat Ireland, will face her biggest challenge yet when she abseils down the side of St Helens Hospital for charity.
Councillor Pat Ireland, along with her daughters Sian and Sue – as well as St Helens Council Chief Executive Mike Palin, fellow councillors and Linzi Prescott from the Steve Prescott Foundation, will drop down from the 50 foot-high Lilac Centre building to raise money for her mayoral charities, the Steve Prescott Foundation, and the Diabetes Centre based at St Helens Hospital, part of the Whiston and St Helens Hospitals’ Charity.
Commenting on her reason for taking on such a daring test, Councillor Ireland – who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes around nine years ago after taking ill on holiday – said “When I first became the Mayor, I hadn’t been up in a helicopter, so I said I’d go up in one if people sponsored me. I was rather scared but it was fabulous and managed to raise money for my charities.
“And then I thought – what else could I do? I held a ball which raised a lovely amount of money on Valentine’s Day – but I wanted a more physical challenge.
“I found out that Whiston and St Helens Hospitals’ Charity were holding two days of abseiling at Whiston and St Helens hospitals, I put myself forward and then I went cold all over – thinking ‘oh dear, why I have I said that?’” she laughed.
“The Diabetes Centre saved my life really, and showed me how to live with diabetes – while the Steve Prescott Foundation is a fantastic local charity which does wonders in raising awareness for health and wellbeing and helping other charities.
“My time as Mayor of St Helens is nearly at an end and I want to go out on a high, literally. Taking part in this abseil will help me to achieve this while topping up on my fundraising efforts for two wonderful causes.”
The event will get underway at 9.30am, with Councillor Ireland’s abseil expected to take place at around Midday. Members of the public are welcome to attend to show their support.
Donation buckets will be available on the day and can also be made through Councillor Ireland’s JustGiving page www.justgiving.com/fundraising/mayorpatireland