Why i’m the Mane event!

In mem­ory of her brother, Jo Kelly, 62, of Far­ring­ton Gur­ney, turned to an un­likely fig­ure in his­tory

Pick Me Up! - - FRONT PAGE -

Cars slowed to a crawl, horns honked and heads swiv­elled

Brush­ing my long, grey hair, I looked in the mir­ror and frowned.

Once my crown­ing glory, my bum-length tresses were look­ing a lit­tle lank and thin.

‘I think it might be time for the chop,’ I told my best mate Marcia, 52, a few days later.

But first, there was some­thing I had to do.

For years, I’d been day­dream­ing about do­ing some­thing out­ra­geous to hon­our my brother Charles, 66, who’d died of lung can­cer in 2011.

But for what I had in mind, I needed my long hair!

‘I want to re-en­act Lady Go­diva’s ride,’ I told Marcia.

A his­tory buff, I’d read all about the no­ble­woman from the 13th cen­tury, who rode a horse naked through Coven­try, cov­ered only by her hair, to protest high taxes.

‘You can bor­row my daugh­ter’s horse,’ Marcia laughed. A great start! But how on earth would I go about pub­li­cis­ing it? When I told my kids Melissa, 40, and Joseph, 34, they cracked up laugh­ing. ‘Trust you, Mum,’ Melissa gig­gled, promis­ing to cheer me on.

I was known for my wacky sense of hu­mour.

So dif­fer­ent to Charles, who’d been a quiet man. Still, he loved a good chuckle and I knew that my bonkers plan would have tick­led him pink!

‘I’ll set up a fundrais­ing web­site,’ my boy Joseph of­fered. ‘What’s your goal?’ ‘How about £250?’ I sug­gested. But I’d no idea if we’d reach it. Telling friends and fam­ily about my plan, I de­cided my route – it’d be a short trot through the small town of Rad­stock, where I worked in a bak­ery.

The morn­ing of 24 Septem­ber 2018 dawned, sunny and warm. Good job – un­der my dress I was wear­ing just sil­ver nip­ple tas­sels and a pair of rid­ing boots!

‘You sure you’re up for this?’ Tina, Marcia’s daugh­ter, said, lead­ing Lucy, a beau­ti­ful blackand-white horse, to­wards me.

I glanced round. It was 10am. There was no one about.

‘Let’s go!’ I said, whip­ping off my dress and clam­ber­ing into the sad­dle.

With only my flow­ing locks to hide my mod­esty, I clung onto the reins.

It was 10 years since I’d rid­den. ‘Bit higher up than I re­mem­bered,’ I said.

Soon we were clip-clop­ping through the town cen­tre.

Cars slowed to a crawl, horns honked and heads swiv­elled, as peo­ple got an eye­ful of my birth­day suit.

I had a small linen scarf cov­er­ing my lap, but my bum was as bare as the day I was born!

‘Talk about a di­ver­sion!’

some­one hooted cheer­fully.

My friends, daugh­ter and grand­kids came out in sup­port, wav­ing as I trot­ted past.

I was lov­ing every mo­ment of it but, af­ter 15 min­utes, it was time to pop my clothes back on – it was get­ting a tad chilly!

Af­ter Lucy was re­turned to her horse­box, I got dressed and headed to the hair­dresser.

Time to bid farewell to my Lady Go­diva hair. I had it cut into a chic bob and the rest of my hair was sent to a char­ity that made wigs for chil­dren with can­cer.

Best of all, my stark­ers stunt raised £1,000 for Macmil­lan Can­cer Sup­port!

Charles, dar­ling, I hope your daft lit­tle sis made you proud!

Me, car­ry­ing out my neigh-kid am­bi­tion

Hair to­day, gone to­mor­row!

My brother Charles as a young man

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