'Coffee mornings? Forget it - I'm going to jump out of a plane'

Barbara Smith celebrates her 80th birthday with a skydive to raise money for Action for Children

Barbara Smith
Barbara Smith

Barbara Smith celebrated her 80th birthday in style last week with a skydive to raise money for the children’s charity Action for Children.

Smith, a lifelong supporter of the charity, performed a 12,000-foot tandem skydive at Langar Airfield in Nottinghamshire on her birthday, 3 August.

She was given the all-clear from her doctor before committing to the jump.

"It’s strange how the idea came about," she said. "I was at a meeting about how to raise money for Action for Children. We mentioned coffee mornings, cake sales and, for the more adventurous, mountain climbing or a bungee jump.

"Someone asked me what I would do, and I said ‘well I might jump out of a plane – but I’ll do it for a special occasion, like my 80th birthday’.

"I just wanted to do something different for Action for Children – it is such a wonderful charity and helps so many vulnerable children up and down the country."

The charity estimates that Smith has been involved in raising about £100,000 through events she has organised over several years.

She was invited to a garden party at Buckingham Palace in 2009 in recognition of her charity work.

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