Romford’s charity abseil cancelled for first time in nine years

�Romford’s annual charity abseil event has been cancelled for the first time in its ninth year history.

The event, which saw 140 people abseil down the Romford YMCA 11-storey building last September, had to be cancelled after the building owners planned repairs to its roof.

The fundraiser is usually a chance for local charities to gain funds to help with their work.

Linda Coe, from the Havering East Rotary Club, which organises the abseil, said: “It would have gone ahead had there not been a problem with the building.

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“The club is looking to organise another event for people to raise funds for their own charities through a variety of events, but this year’s event is definitely out.

“It is usually a fairly substantial fundraiser which is popular with a lot of local charities who will suffer.”

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A spokesman for St Francis Hospice said: “The hospice has always been well supported by daring fundraisers joining in the Rotary Club’s abseil and last year around �3,500 was raised for patient care from the event.

“It’s a shame the abseil cannot be held this year as I’m sure people would have signed up to take part on behalf of the hospice and raised much-needed funds. The hospice depends on the generosity of the community giving their time or raising money so that we provide our specialist care, free of charge, to people affected by cancer or other life-limiting illness when they need our support.

“It is difficult to tell how our income will be affected by the abseil not taking place, but each year the hospice reviews the events it offers supporters and the abseil was not planned this time as we had places in a new event, Mud ’n’ Madness and launched a zumbathon – both of which are returning next year.”

Romford YMCA said they were due to fix some cladding on the side of the building, and had to cancel the event for health and safety reasons so it could be fixed.

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