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28 October 2014
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Download Festival

Two members of the 'cup squad'
Two members of the 'cup squad'

A Download Toast To Simon’s Charity Trek

By Rebecca Hobbs
Amidst the rock 'n' roll of this year's Download Festival, one man was seriously collecting discarded cups to help raise money for an epic trek later this year.

Simon Stanton has always been one to take shank’s pony and hardly surprising when he lives in Stonebroom, Derbyshire with the rolling Peak District at his disposal for long, beautiful walks.

And even a game of rugby and trip to the gym is not unheard of for the fit 47 year old father of two.

Simon Stanton
Simon Stanton

But this year he will be pushing himself and his limits that extra bit further as he takes part in a 60k trek through the Himalayas in a bid to raise funds for Save The Children. 

During his mammoth charity hike he will visit one of the many Save The Children’s projects, to see first hand what a difference money raised can make to some of the world’s most needy youngsters.

However, this last weekend Simon was let off training and headed to the Download Festival for three days of heavy rock as opposed to three days heavy duty in the gym, not that surviving a festival isn’t a feat in itself!

An annual event for Simon, visiting Donington also meant catching up with friends from across the country who descend on Donington for the big event and I am very proud to be part of the group who go under the deprecating term of OOFAs (Official Old F*rts Alliance) in honour that the age of 30 is behind us all (well behind for some!).

As part of this year’s efforts to make the festival more environmentally aware, the organisers had a genius plan of a deposit system on the large paper cups used at the bar.

To encourage recycling and deter littering each paper cup returned earned the person 20p back.

Two members of the 'cup squad'
Two members of the 'cup squad'

This caused a lightbulb moment for Simon’s friend Steve who set about collecting all the group’s cups with the view of cashing them in with the money going towards Simon’s Save The Children fund.  And an idea that good can’t help but grow!

With a bit of charm and gentle persuasion no-one passing with empty cups escaped the attention of Steve’s newly formed ‘cup squad’. 

And with the added bonus of a rip-roaring cheer so loud it out did the bands for those who donated cups, saying no wasn’t an option. With the cup tower growing the total was rising.

I think we surprised even ourselves, as each 20p cup donated here and there amounted to a staggering £190 for a great cause.  Simon would like to thank Steve for his idea and enthusiasm, the impromptu ‘cup squad’ and all those who donated their empties.

And after the revelries it’s back to the walking boots and gym sessions for Simon as the October event looms ever closer. 

Simon is keeping a blog of his preparations and we will check back in with him when he sets off on what will be an epic, emotional and, most certainly, worthwhile trip.

Rebecca Hobbs

last updated: 16/06/07
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