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Rushcliffe man, 88, plans his first skydive for RAF charity

An 88-year-old former RAF motor mechanic from Rushcliffe will take part in a skydive to raise money for the RAF Association.

Roger Allton, from Radcliffe on Trent in Nottinghamshire, will do his first-ever tandem skydive at Skydive Hibaldstow in Lincolnshire on Saturday 13 May as part of RAFA Jumps.

Roger, a keen private pilot who has clocked up hundreds of hours in gliders and powered aircraft over the years, will jump from 15,000 feet and freefall at up to 120mph down to 5,000 feet before the parachute opens.

Roger served his National Service in the RAF from 1954-56, where he served as a Senior Aircraftman stationed at RAF Seletar in Singapore. On leaving the RAF, he joined his father as a wholesale grocer and was responsible for the opening of the first SPAR stores in the UK.

Roger said: ‘When you’re in a glider you always have a parachute with you, but I have never used it.

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‘A skydive just seems like the next step. I want to continue creating awareness of the RAF Association and its work, and to raise as much money for them as possible”.

‘We’re a very adventurous family, following each other on our mobiles using Strava. We’re very competitive as well, so my fitness really sets a challenge for the others.”

Roger has twice taken part in wing walking for the Association, and he has also participated in the Association’s annual cycling event RAFA Rides. Over the years, Roger has run two marathons (Robin Hood and London), and 49 half-marathons, always raising money for local charities.

All his family (three children, six grandchildren, four stepchildren and six step-grandchildren) share Roger’s adventurous streak, with polar explorer and step-daughter-in-law Fiona Thornewill MBE beating Roger to be the first skydiver in the family.

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