On a wing and a prayer '“ Hartlepool daredevil Tom, 72, invites undertaker to his wing walk adventure

Young at heart daredevil Tom Wilson is raising sponsorship for a high flying fundraiser.

Friday, 27th April 2018, 6:00 am
Updated Friday, 27th April 2018, 8:36 am
Tom Wilson is to wing walk for charity
Tom Wilson is to wing walk for charity

Tom, from Hartlepool, who is 72, will go up into the wide blue yonder and wing walk when he is strapped to a bi-plane travelling at 135mph in six weeks time.

He has even invited his doctor and an undertaker friend to be there for the hair-raising spectacle.

Tom Wilson with his support team to wing walk for charity. Mitch Wilson, Joanne Kennedy and daughter Anita Wilson

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Tom hopes to raise £2,500 for three causes close to his heart.

They include Guide Dogs for the Blind and Hartlepool Blind Welfare Association, as he experienced sight problems in the past.

The third is the Locomotive Conservation and Learning Trust due to his love of steam.

Tom, of Elwick Road, said: “I was at Sunderland Airshow and a plane went overhead with someone wing walking.

Tom inspects the bi-plane at Breighton Airfield near Selby

“I said to my mate ‘I could do that’. he said ‘give over your daughter will kill you’.

“My daughter said if I was going to do it why don’t I do it for charity.”

Tom, a retired forklift engineer, visited the airfield in Selby, North Yorkshire, where the wing walk will take place on June 3.

Despite his age, the only test he had to pass was to be able to climb onto the 10ft wing.

Tom Wilson with his support team to wing walk for charity. Mitch Wilson, Joanne Kennedy and daughter Anita Wilson

“I could get on by myself so after that it was all systems go,” added Tom.

“My consultant and undertaker are going. I have said to take a coffin in case I fall off!”

He collected money and told people about his challenge in Morrison’s supermarket yesterday.

Tom was joined by his daughter Anita Wilson, and friends Mitch Wilson and Joanne Kennedy.

Tom inspects the bi-plane at Breighton Airfield near Selby

Anita said: “I did have a bit of a fright when he told me about it. He has always been known as a bit eccentric. But he is the only parent I have got and I’ve got to support him. He is really looking forward to it.”

A host of businesses are supporting Tom’s fundraising including Dots Place cafe, Hartlepool Cricket Club, The Globe pub, Fortune and Hargreaves accountants and Fishers Hotel Pitlochry in Scotland, to name just a few.

He added: “I am up to approximately £1,800 now. I want to get to £2,500 which would make a generous donation to the three charities.

“They are all non-government funded and depend on idiots like me to raise money.”

To find out more visit the Facebook page Wilsonwingwalks or to donate go to virginmoneygiving.com/WilsonWingWalks