Tameside Radio presenter beats the drop for Willow Wood
Monday 3rd October 2016 14:28 Ashton Community News Posted by Adam Higgins

A popular Tameside Radio presenter plunged through the skies last weekend to help raise over £1,000 for Willow Wood Hospice.

Scott Bruton and friend Sam Cole were supposed to drop from 11,000ft but decided to freefall from 15,000ft instead for their epic skydive at the Black Knights Parachute Centre in Lancashire last Sunday.

Between them, they have raised over £1,200 so far for the Ashton-based hospice, which provides palliative and end-of-life care to patients free of charge.

And Scott, who presents Tameside Today on weekdays between 11am and 3pm, couldn’t think of anything he has enjoyed doing more.

The 27-year-old told the Reporter: “It was just incredible – I was really lucky because we got there relatively early and I was able to go up first.

“It was a blur until I got on the plane and then there was no place to hide and no turning back. I was really psyched for it and had been looking forward to it for a while.

“We had the option to upgrade to 15,000ft which we took – it was an extra £40 but it didn’t bother me.”

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Ready for take off: Scott (left) and Sam jumped at the chance to raise money for Willow Wood

Scott was supported by his dad Paul and girlfriend Helen but, because the skydive was put back a week due to poor weather conditions, it meant his mum Joanne – who works at Willow Wood – sadly couldn’t attend.

When up in the air, their highest recorded speed was almost 150 miles per hour as temperatures plummeted as low as -17 degrees – something Scott described as ‘a mind-blowing experience’.

He added: “You could feel the cold and the wind hit your face – I almost felt weightless. I was scared but it didn’t really process because you had jobs to do when you were up there to make sure it went smoothly.

“The views were awesome – I could see Blackpool Tower and the coastline and even the Isle of Man in the distance.

“The coolest thing was getting to direct the parachute. My instructor Steve Saunders showed me how and it was a little bit like balancing scales, when one rung went up the other went down as the controls were sensitive.

“Landing was very awkward because we had to slide on our bum when touching the ground, bring our legs up and close our feet in. If we didn’t we could have snapped an ankle or even break a leg.”

But for Scott, the main thing was giving back to Willow Wood – a cause close to him having seen and heard all about their work to deliver specialist care to those suffering with life-limiting illnesses.

The former X Factor contestant, who lives in Ashton, commented: “The experience of the skydive was scary for me for a short period of time but it’s nothing compared to the days and weeks the people at the hospice have to endure, so it was very worthwhile.

“I know a lot about their work as my mum has been there for years since starting her training to be a nurse and the hospice has a regular slot on my show.

“The money will help keep services active as they provide a standard of care free of charge which stands out from everyone else. They go above and beyond with great work in the local community and every penny makes a huge difference.”

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Achievement: Scott received a certificate for completing the skydive

Overall, it was ‘an amazing weekend’ for Scott and Sam, 32, who lives on King’s Road in Ashton, as it coincided with the radio station’s ninth birthday celebrations.

And they loved it so much that they are thinking of doing it again next year.

Scott said: “I was talking with Sam and our instructor whilst we were having a beer to celebrate and we may do another skydive in February.

“Now we have provisional licenses we can jump on our own but we have to complete a one-day course in order to do it.”

You can still donate to Scott’s fundraising page at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/scott-1036 and Sam is also collecting funds via https://www.justgiving.com/saminthesky.