Dippers limber up to take the ice-cold plunge
One of Sunderland’s loudest and proudest Boxing Day Dip teams are getting ready to take the plunge.
Charity champion Julie Reay will once again lead her band of merry dippers into the North Sea on December 26.
They’ll be raising money for the Peter David Lane Trust Fund – which was set up in memory of Julie’s son Peter, who died in a tragic rope swing accident in Galleys Gill, Sunderland.
Changes have been made to the dip this year because of the closure of the Seaburn Centre as part of the seafront redevelopment.
The beloved event’s future was thrown into doubt until a new home was found at the Marriott Hotel, in Queen’s Parade, where dippers will meet to register and warm up after the event this year.
Julie says although the venue change has cut the number of participants due to less space, she is as excited as ever to take part.
She said: “This year we will leave from the Marriott Hotel and due to these changes, numbers have been cut and teams have a maximum of 20 dippers.
“Of course this has been hard for me, but I am thrilled and very proud to be putting my team together in memory of my precious son Peter.
“Our team, although much smaller than previous years, will still be named Footprints in the Sand and all money raised will be donated to a charity close to our hearts, 4Louis.”
Set up by Houghton mum Kirsty McGurrell and her family, the 4Louis charity provides memory boxes free of charge to hospitals so that bereaved parents can treasure keepsakes of their little ones.
They also provide hospitals with cuddle cots, a specialist piece of equipment designed to help parents spend longer with their deceased children, as well as supporting hospitals with funding for bereavement and counselling services.
Julie added: “I want to send a special thank you to Keith and Darren and all staff from Total Sports, who again have donated our fabulous T-shirts. I’d also like to thank our amazing sponsors – with their help and support and generous donations, we aim to raise a fantastic amount to help this wonderful charity.”
The closing date for entries into the Boxing Day Dip is December 12 and there are still places left. To enter, contact sunderland. firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone Jim Nicol on 0191 5654207.
Julie Reay and her Boxing Day 2017 dip team.