Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Panto Horse Derby and Generations Walk

It is rare that I am able to combine family and work and this weekend was the moment it all came together. Saturday was the second Pantomime Horse Derby at Windsor Racecourse. Thanks to generous sponsorship from RSA it was a family day out with a barbeque, entertainment for the children and of course the panto horse races and dressage. We hope that we have broken the world record for the number of pantomime horses in a race – will keep quiet about the number that completed the race until we hear.

Number 1 daughter is visiting from Switzerland with children and Number 1 son and family. Even his in-laws came along, so we were at Windsor en masse and a great time was had by all. Matt Hicks showed everyone how dressage is really done on his horse, Highmark, and then the panto horses gave their all. Very proud that the Breast Cancer Campaign horse came third in the dressage – yes I know I was one of the judges but I am sure that had nothing to do with it. Very aptly the winner of the best turned out horse was “The Dishonourable Member” complete with pin-striped suit and loadsamoney pinned to it. True to form, chocolate money was thrown up to the judges as a bribe but we acted entirely within the rules and the fact that they won was down to creativity.

All four grandchildren stayed the night and by the time two six-year olds and two four-year-olds settled down the night was half gone, and they were up at about 5.30am so I was very bleary eyed when I arrived at the Generations Walk at Kenwood at 9am. This is the eleventh walk and there were a lot of familiar faces; men, women, lots of children, some walking with parents and some in push-chairs and quite a few dogs as well. Cheryl Stakol continues to do an amazing job with her walk and her family all rally round. Over the years the walk has raised around £250,000 – all down to one woman and her family and friends.

A sobering moment amongst all the pink and fluff – three women discussing the lingering side-effects of their chemotherapy – there is still a lot to do before we can say we have beaten breast cancer. The money raised this weekend will go to ensure that we do get there – for women now and in the future.

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