Radio star set for epic climb

BBC Radio Suffolk star Lesley Dolphin is gearing up for the challenge of a lifetime to raise �30,000 towards a new children’s hospice.

The daytime presenter will join a team of eight other volunteers to climb almost 6,000 meters to the summit of Mount Kilimanjaro in aid of the East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) Treehouse Appeal.

Lesley, 53, said: “Hospices are fantastic places and I couldn’t believe we haven’t got anything equivalent for children.

“I keep asking people to donate to the appeal so I wanted to do my bit.”

EACH hopes to raise �3 million to build a state-of-the-art hospice for life-threatened children in quiet woodland off Bixley Road in Ipswich by the New Year.

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The service currently operates from a four-bedroom bungalow in Walker Close, Ipswich, which has just one bathroom and limited space for families of sick children to stay overnight.

When built, the new complex will have en-suite accomodation for families of life-threatened children and specialist rooms for hydro and physio therapy.

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Thanks to overwhelming support, the campaign total has topped �160,000 since it launched just three weeks ago.

The group will tackle the World’s tallest, free-standing mountain in the 10-day challenge in January next year.

“I like to test myself but I’ve never done anything as physically demaning as this before,” she said. “If I can drive past the new hospice and think I did my little bit, it will be lovely.”

Lesley agreed to the arduous challenge after her friend Steve Flory, of Ipswich-based company Hudson Signs, talked the presenter into taking part after a few glasses of wine during a Sunday lunch.

The team, which includes Steve’s wife, Jayne, Mark Loades from EACH, David Rowledge, Ray Walters, John Button, Will Leith and Glenys Carter will now embark on a rigorous training schedule to prepare them for the gruelling demands of the daunting climb.

To sponsor the team, visit

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