Regular PBO forumite 'Oldbilbo', Will Bailey, will be abseiling down Portland Bill for charity

PBO subscriber and contributor Wil Bailey has been persuaded to ‘descend to new depths’ in aid of a worthy cause.
Wil, better known to YBW forumites as ‘Oldbilbo’, will be abseiling down Portland Bill Lighthouse next month for charity.

The event is part of a trio of lighthouse abseiling challenges made by the Corporation of Trinity House to mark its 500th anniversary of serving and caring for mariners and their dependents.

Proceeds raised will go towards the corporation’s charity, which annually contributes around £4million to maritime charities such as the Association of Sail Training Organisations (ASTO), Jubilee Sailing Trust, The Mary Rose Trust and Seafarers UK, plus several others.

‘Oldbilbo’, 67, from Bath, said: ‘A long time ago and far away, I did real abseiling as a rock climber, but that was a lifetime ago. Quite a few people will be surprised that I’m doing this, as I’m old, grey and doddering, but may think it’s worth encouraging me by gifting a little money to a worthy charity. That’s the whole point of this.’

He added: ‘Sailing has been my religion for half a century, in just about everything from a wooden lugger to an all-carbon racing trimaran. It’s time I put something back in. I spotted the PBO article on their ‘News’ website and contacted Trinity House for a time slot – I’ll be abseiling down Portland Bill Lighthouse, in Dorset, on Saturday 19 July, around 1230.’
In addition to the Portland event, fundraising abseil challenges are being held on Saturday 5 July at Southwold (Suffolk) lighthouse and Friday 11 July at Nash Point (Glamorgan) lighthouse. Each event will run from 10am to 4pm.

Abseiling places are strictly limited to a maximum of 50, and for over 18s only. Organisers say there is still a limited number of places left at each location.

To register please download the registration form here and return it quickly, with your registration fee of £30, to Phillip Cruddace – full details on the form – and help raise sponsorship via the Corporation of Trinity House’s ‘Just Giving’ account.

Click here to find Oldbilbo’s Just Giving page.

For more information about the charities the Corporation regularly supports click here.

Pictures: Wil Bailey; his Oldbilbo forum avatar; Portland Bill lighthouse. Credit: Jean Hurlock