Fire walker Geoff is a bold aged pensioner
A 67-YEAR-OLD charity worker has proved he is hot stuff – after becoming the UK’S oldest firewalk instructor.
Pensioner Geoff Fowler is now qualified to teach others to walk on red-hot burning embers after taking on the challenge himself during a four-day firewalk instructors’ course last week.
Geoff ’s feet tackled temperatures of around 850 degrees Fahrenheit (454 Celsius) during the course in Thorney – and he walked over a whopping 108 fires in one night alone.
He said: “Before I did my first firewalk I was nervous and excited but empowered, especially after I’d done it. I thought if I can do this I can anything.
“I didn’t even consider my age as a barrier.
“I only feel eight on the inside, it’s just the padding on the outside that looks a bit tatty! You are only as old as you feel.”
Geoff, of Thackers Way, Market Deeping, decided to start firewalking in a bid to raise money and awareness about his charity, the Mustard Seed Project, which helps people in a poor suburb of Kenya get themselves out of poverty.
The father-of-two set up the charity with his wife Rita following a trip to celebrate their retirement in 2008.
They had planned to go to America, but by chance they ended up going on safari in Kenya and one of their drivers took them to Mgongeni in Mombasa.
He said: “Rita is a retired teacher so we went to look at a school and it was just awful. There were kids sitting on the floor in a decrepit building and two untrained teachers trying to teach them something.
“We both thought we could do something about this.
“We came back and thought about sending some books over but we thought we could do something more.”
Since then they have worked with the community to help build a larger school, a sports centre with pitches and equipment and enabled basic medical facilities such as a clinic with a qualified midwife and birthing room where women can have their babies in a clean environment.
Geoff said he decided to do the firewalk instructors’ training course so he can run his own firewalk events to raise money for the charity, but also so he can encourage people in Mombasa to take up the challenge.
He said: “I have set up football teams and a boxing club and I am about to introduce volleyball, netball and martial arts, but introducing firewalking would really help them believe that if they set their mind to it they can achieve anything.
“Any age can do firewalking. I wish I’d done this when I was 15 as my life would have been different.”
Alongside firewalking, Geoff ’s training also saw him walking over broken glass, breaking arrows with his throat, smashing through bricks with his bare hands and other “empowering” activities.
The training was carried out by Steve Consalvez, managing director of Success Formulae, a business coaching and personal development company based in Thorney, and the UK’S only Firewalking Institute of Research and Education (FIRE) certified Master Firewalking Instructor. HOT STUFF: Geoff Fowler is the UK’S oldest firewalk instructor. METP-24-05-12RH3
EMPOWERMENT: Geoff smashes a brick and prepares for a ‘trust fall’. Picture: ROWLAND HOBSON