Employees from London-based Air Charter Service staff raised almost £9,000 ($12,000) for a children’s charity near London by parachuting at Old Sarum airfield near Salisbury, England. The charity, Momentum, supports families with children facing cancer or other life-challenging conditions across southwest London, Surrey, and West Sussex.
A team of 11 ACS staff made the tandem jumps from a Cessna 208 Caravan operated by Go Skydive. Glenn Phillips, ACS’s public relations and advertising manager, who was among the jumpers, said, “We were all a little apprehensive, but we knew that we were doing it for a very worthy cause, which helped with the nerves."
After waiting their turn to take to the skies, the jumpers boarded the aircraft and taxied down the runway. It took about 10 minutes to get to the required altitude of 10,000 feet, Phillips said, and then the door opened.
"From inside the aircraft you could see out over the landscape, but there was no time to take in the view as you were shuffled to the edge of the cargo door. This was the scariest part!" he said. “Once falling, it was incredible; hurtling at more than 120 mph towards the ground was an experience I will never forget. After around half a minute my instructor pulled the cord and the parachute opened. Then we glided down and I finally had the chance to take in the beautiful Wiltshire scenery.”
Nicola O’Donnell, corporate fundraising manager for Momentum, added, “The ACS team’s fundraising is amazing. I cannot thank them all enough. They have made a huge difference to families who have a child with cancer or life-limiting illness.”
ACS started in 1990 and from its two founders has grown to employ some 500 people at offices in 25 locations worldwide, offering private jet, commercial airliner, and cargo aircraft charters.