POLICE officers from North Swindon will be exchanging their uniforms for running shoes on Sunday as they take on an intense 10k obstacle course to raise money for missing people.
Organised by PC Sandra Higgins-Hughes, beat manager for Highworth, the team of eight have had T-shirts printed and will seek to raise as much as possible for Missing People UK when they tackle the gruelling Wolf Run.
The pack of PCs will clamber, crawl and swim through 10 kilometres, two lakes and 25 obstacles as fast as possible Donna West, inspector for North Swindon, said the team would have to combine their efforts to get through the course around Stanford Hall in Leicestershire.
“The Wolf Run is a 10 kilometre run, including 25 obstacle courses and two lake swims,” she said. “It will all be one after the other with no let up.
“We have been preparing by training in running and swimming but it is difficult when you do not know what obstacles you will be facing. I imagine we will be helping each other over most of them. You are either crawling through mud or getting over obstacles all the time.”
The team have had some fundraising issues, and are hoping to catch up after some technical problems.
“We have been getting fantastic support from our families, but we have been having problems with our JustGiving page,” added Donna. “For a long time it would not let people access it, and getting the link working was a nightmare.
“We got it sorted last week so donations are picking up now.
“We will also be doing Pretty Muddy Bristol in July, but we have to prepare for this one first. We have all done a fair bit of training.”
The Missing Persons charity is one supported strongly by Chief Constable Pat Geenty, and Donna said it is one which goes unrecognised too often.
“It is one of those charities where people do not know much about it unless it affects you directly,” she said.
“We chose Missing People because we deal with that all the time in our jobs. We see the effects and the causes of people being left behind, especially with people who are not found at all.
“Our chief constable leads for the charity, and I am police search advisor, so having that skill keeps the charity quite close to my heart.
“It is slightly different from the normal causes people raise money for, and one of those charities that does not often get a lot of support.
“Even for somebody going missing for a few hours the level of stress that causes within the family and their concern is quite a trauma.
“There are three of us running from the North sector, and eight representing Wiltshire Police overall,We are just hoping to raise as much as we can.”
To donate to the North Swindon neighbourhood policing team team visit their JustGiving page at http://www.justgiving.com/PC2514HIGGINS-HUGHES.
CONCERNS OVER MISSING MAN
CONCERN is mounting for missing Swindon man David Birley, who has not been seen for almost a fortnight.
David Geoffrey Birley, pictured, of Redhouse, was last seen in the early hours of April 12 at the Premier Inn at Kembrey Park in Stratton, and is believed to have left there at around 10am.
He is described as white, with short dark hair and wearing glasses.
A search is currently being conducted by police in the Swindon area, where David is thought to be staying locally in a hotel or guest house.
David had only recently moved to North Swindon for work and has links with the West Midlands and Stockport, but at this stage there is no indication where he might have gone.
He had formerly been a lodger at a property on Eastbury Way, Redhouse, where his car, a blue Vauxhall Corsa, currently remains parked outside.
Anyone who may have had contact with David over the past week, or who may have information which can help officers to trace him, are asked to call Wiltshire Police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.