Deco-Pak?s marketing manager Craig Hall has completed the inaugural Forget Me Not 500 ?banger rally? challenge in aid of Forget Me Not Children?s Hospice.?
Wearing outfits that resembled ?The Stig? from TV?s Top Gear, the Huddersfield businessman and his co-driver, Joe Washington, honoured this year?s greatest sporting events (The FIFA World Cup and the Tour De France) by driving from West Yorkshire to Paris and back, only just managing to keep their 12 year old Hyundai YRV from falling apart!
The challenge was to buy a roadworthy banger for under ?500 and navigate through 4 countries in 4 days, whilst also completing mini challenges along the way ? all to raise money for Forget Me Not Children?s Hospice based in Huddersfield.
Craig Hall and Joe Washington with their Forget Me Not Rally 500 banger and the other participants, Valli Opticians surrounded by staff and two children from the Forget Me Not Hospice in Huddersfield.
Day 1, Thursday 12th June
Craig and Joe donned their Stig outfits and set off in their banger with another team from Huddersfield, heading first to Hull where they hopped on the ferry to Rotterdam.? ?We met some fellow rally enthusiasts on the ferry, some of whom had slightly better cars than us.? said Craig, jokingly.? ?They were clearly jealous of our twin deck tape player, and offered to swap their Porsches and Aston Martins with us, but we were having none of it!?
Day 2, Friday 13th June
From Rotterdam they drove straight to Amsterdam, where they stayed the night, joining thousands of ecstatic Dutch football fans watching on an outdoor screen as Holland beat Spain 5-1. ?What an atmosphere ? the Dutch were going crazy and we were right in the middle of it!?
Day 3, Saturday 14th June
Leaving Amsterdam at 6am, their next stop was Brussels – making sure to pose for photos for supporters back home and picking up chocolates to take back to the hospice.
Disaster!? At a petrol station outside of Brussels, the duo realised they had a dangerous fuel leak.? Noticing the air conditioning seemed to be pumping fumes into the car, they pulled into a petrol station to see what was wrong.
?We discovered the fuel filler neck pipe had crumbled away, spilling fuel all over us as we tried to fix it.? All we had was our initiative (and a number of cable ties), but we managed to secure the pipe in place ? but whether or not it would get us back safely, we didn?t know.?
Crossing their fingers for luck and taking it slowly, the pair were forced to take a detour in order to make it to their ferry on time. ?They headed straight for the port town of Caen in Normandy, where they managed to squeeze in a ?spot the Stig? photo challenge for their followers on Twitter.
?The Stigs? ? The pair at their penultimate destination – Caen, France
Day 4, Sunday 15th June
After 4 days solid driving (and a small amount of breaking down) the little car and its costumed drivers finally made it back to Huddersfield.? ?We arrived home at around 1pm, dog tired yet triumphant.? We completed our challenge, had an amazing time, and met some great people.? Not only that, we also raised money and awareness for a really worthy cause.?
Craig and his team are just a short way off fulfilling their ?3,000 target, and he confirms that there is still time to dig deep??.is still trying to reach his fundraising target of ?3,000, and urges anyone that would like to donate, to do so by visiting the dedicated Just Giving web page www.justgiving.com/teams/rally500, which also shows exactly how much has been raised so far.
Every penny raised will go towards Forget Me Not Children?s Hospice, helping support children with life shortening conditions and their families across West Yorkshire.
Kate Goldring, Corporate Partnership Manager at the charity said: ?We have been overwhelmed with the amazing effort put in by both of the teams who took on the Forget Me Not 500. Deco-Pak and Valli Opticians have been fantastic to work with and we are already looking forward to planning next year?s event.?
Further details about Forget Me Not Children?s Hospice and the work the charity undertakes across West Yorkshire can be found at www.forgetmenotchild.co.uk.
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To find out more about Deco-Pak, please call (01422) 204394, or email via the ?contact us? form on their web site, www.deco-pak.co.uk