Brigade and Ambulance personnel step out for charity

Staff from Cleveland Fire Brigade joined forces with their counterparts from the Tees area of the North East Ambulance Service (NEAS) to raise £6,210 for Help for Heroes.

The sponsorship money was raised after taking part in the 110 mile Cleveland Way walk earlier this year and also from a ceilidh event. On Wednesday 7 December, at Redcar Ambulance Station, staff from the two organisations handed over the money to the Help for Heroes charity.

The two emergency services already had close working links as Grangetown Fire Station is a standby point for NEAS and this is how the combined challenge to raise money for the charity came about.

Beginning the challenging walk on Tuesday 17 May, the team started in Helmsley then passed through Osmotherly and Kildale before making their way to Saltburn. From Saltburn they walked along the coast taking in Runswick Bay, Whitby, Scarborough and finishing in Filey.

The walk was organised by NEAS paramedic Ivan Doherty who was a former soldier prior to joining the ambulance service. He has also served as a medic with the Territorial Army serving in Afghanistan.

Chris Coverdale, Grangetown Blue Watch Manager who helped Ivan to organise the event, said: “The Cleveland Way walk was completed over six days. Four North East Ambulance Service staff and myself from Cleveland Fire Brigade completed the whole walk of 110 miles, with around another 60 people joining us on various days for sections of the walk.

“The Ceilidh was held in October at The Hub, Middlesbrough and was well supported by both organisations.

“There are many members within Cleveland Fire Brigade who are former armed service personnel and have served all over the world in various conflicts and have witnessed major trauma.  The money raised will go some way to help rehabilitate those who are seriously injured.”

“Ivan Doherty, has, along with colleagues, now raised in excess of £14,500 for the Help for Heroes charity which is a fantastic achievement.”

Ivan said, “Serving as a soldier, I have seen many of the horrific and catastrophic injuries that have been inflicted on the men and women that serve in the armed forces.

“By raising money for such a worthy cause we are helping those that put their lives on the line for us every day. Anyone who would like to make a donation towards our team effort can do so at

http://www.justgiving.com/Ivan-Doherty .”

Photo caption: Ivan Doherty (far right) and Chris Coverdale (2nd from right) with fellow fundraisers after handing over the cheque to Help for Heroes.