And The Winner(s) Is (are)

We’re delighted to finally bring you the winners of our best helmets in the Adult Male and Female categories for our virtual event this year.

We’d like to thank everyone that took part while wearing headgear this year. It’s one thing all running together on the night in fancy dress but quite something else to do it on your own or maybe in a smaller group away from the event and have people stare and maybe make you feel uncomfortable for doing so. This can be a regular occurrence for people after a craniotomy. As if they aren’t going through enough already and having to cope, feeling out of place having to wear a protective helmet in all environments can be a very difficult experience indeed. The event has been a really good way to spread awareness of this and help people understand why they might see protective  helmets being worn in unusual circumstances during daily life.

Firstly I’d like to announce the ladies prize. We had many fantastic helmets from the ladies this year and a lot of papier mache was in evidence. It was great to see so much creativity, thank you all so much for your enthusiasm. There were many worthy winners but it soon became clear there was no need to even put a short list up as so many people were struck by one in particular they got in touch with me personally to say so.

 

Kim Wainwright went through her own craniotomy in April and when she heard about Hilly Helmet saw it something to get her back on her feet and aim at. Kim was having to wear a protective helmet already so as a keen knitter,  created a covering for it to transform herself into a viking complete with beard. It took all her energy to complete her effort leaving her literally exhausted for some days afterwards. We think she is amazing and really deserving of the best ladies helmet award and we’re so thrilled to have had her be part of it all. We hope to welcome her next year in person.

Meanwhile, the male prize also saw some great efforts. Flowers, lights, a pot plant, pipe cleaners, even a mini golf course, it really was a tough choice I’m glad I didn’t have to make and after a lengthy opportunity for Helmeteers to vote the winner is Michael Fisher with a nice floral number.

Prizes are currently being created and will be delivered over the next couple of weeks. Junior prizes will be announced later in the week.

Next year we will be back to having just one winning helmet, so get your thinking caps/helmets on, we’re looking for something extra special for our 5th anniversary.

 

 

Hilly Helmet 4 – Final Total Passed To Brain Tumour Support

With this years’ event finally completed we are delighted to announce a total amount to send to Brain Tumour Support raised by our 2020 Event.

Back in December we opened entries for this year having sold out once again in 2019. In January we learned our event had been awarded an industry recognised gold award for runner ratings and for a good deal of time during the voting process Hilly Helmet had stood as top rated off road event for GB for the year. We were left feeling proud at the recognition and humble so many had taken the trouble to help us achieve this .

We made plans to put on another event you’d love again this summer and quickly had backers in place, some existing right from year one and some who were keen to back us for the first time. The Covid-19 pandemic came along in March and really put the cat among the pigeons. Many thought it would all be over very quickly but when my work started asking me to complete an 8 week diary for which days I would be going in and which I would be ‘working from home’, I was left feeling not so sure. I decided to watch and wait but make a plan B.

Charities were suddenly being hit the hardest and with some people quickly having less disposable income in the short term and an uncertain financial future, every penny counted on a personal level. Added to this, non essential shops, which included charity shops, were closed until further notice and worst of all, pretty much all charity fund raising events were now having to be cancelled due to the infection risk large gatherings brought. Here at Orange Helmet Events, we had few choices, hang on and hope our published date for Hilly Helmet would be safe, cancel for 2020, or try something else.

By the end of April it felt like August would still be too early for a mass participation event, so we looked at offering a virtual event instead. The first thing we did was write to all our entrants up to that point and ask them if we could convert their entries to virtual ones and the response was a resounding yes.

We planned Hilly Helmet in your town, running in your own neighbourhood during your daily exercise period we were all allowed. For the first time we also extended the entries to families, giving people something to do together during the lock down period. Creating helmets and running together as families seemed a really good idea so we gave it a go. Everyone taking part was to submit their evidence and a picture of them in the headgear. Prizes for adults and kids would be on offer as well as mementos to everybody taking part.

We spoke with our event partners too, should we refund their donations or roll them over to next year? We would still have some expenses to meet but less than a mass event on the night, but all our backers just told us to keep the money and use whatever we needed to then give the charity what was left. We also had money donated specifically to buy some feather banners for use at our finish line as well as promotional use during the build up to our events in the future.

Once a few people did their runs and sent us their pictures, more started to sign up. As lock down eased, people started to come to the actual hill at Westbury to do their runs. Of course we advised that large groups were still not allowed but people proved to be very sensible and just came in small groups of less than six and it was great to be able to meet and run with a good number of them and take pictures. There were many walkers around the locality who had a smile brought to their faces by our runners and walkers adorned with all manner of headgear, all in the name of charity. In the end we had an amazing 158 sign ups for our virtual effort.

We also decided to open a just giving page for anyone wishing to donate as we also would not be able to have an on the night raffle. We often get casual donations along the way and on the night too, so the page was an ideal way of supplementing this years’ fund raise.

Having come through all the challenges we’re therefore very pleased to announce to final total raised by this years’ event is £2518. This includes entry money, money donated through Just Giving and excess funds after event expenses. At time of writing, the Leighton Recreation Centre is still not open for business, so it would seem our virtual event decision was the right one. Many, many thanks to everybody who has helped us to achieve this brilliant total.

Finally we’d like to thank our event partners:

Stampede Sports for technical support and funding

Kyna Software for financial, administrative and web support as well as helping fund feather banners

Martin Pearce for assistance with publicity

Stark Ecology for financial support

Mike Sargeant Dry Stone Walling for financial support

Terri Duddy for helping fund feather banners

The West Wilts Magazine for financial support

Wessex Water for provision of drinks bottles to all entrants.

White Horse Pottery in Westbury for creating our unique mementos to mark your achievements once again this year.

As it stands we hope to be able to bring you a proper ‘on the night’ event you’ll really enjoy once again next year. We can’t thank you enough for supporting us so well against all the odds this year and helping Brain Tumour Support once again. P

We’d really like to push the boat out so please watch this space as we plan Hilly Helmet 2021, our 5th anniversary event. If you’d like to be an event partner next year or donate prizes for our raffle or help in some other way, please do get in touch via robin@orangehelmetevents.org.uk

Stand Down Helmeteers

That’s it, it’s all over for another year. After 8 months of hard work we’ve once again got another year under our belt. It goes without saying our event would be nothing without our Helmeteers and once again you’ve been amazing and we can’t thank you enough.

We’re really pleased with how it’s all gone given the circumstances and we’ll be making a further announcement on Monday regarding the success of this years effort.

Our Event Partners Need Your Support Too

With a month to go until we’re done for this year, we’re nearly at 130 entrants for our virtual Helmet event which we’re thrilled with, thank you all so much for your continued support during what has been a very difficult period for pretty much everyone.

In the past we’ve posted many times how grateful we are for all the help and support we get for our little fund (and fun) raiser from all angles and it is especially relevant to remind everyone of the small businesses that get behind us and have done so over the years we have been running our event. It’s thanks to them we get no expenses to pay as they pick it all up for us which also ensures that 100% of your entry fee goes to Brain Tumour Support, the charity that means so much to us.

Please take a look at the Event Partners and  Thanks And Acknowledgements tabs here on our website to see them and please support them by using their services where you can as they work towards rebuilding their business.

Helmet Hearsay

It’s great to see our Helmeteers continuing to submit their proof of runs and walks as well as photos of some great head gear on show once again this year.

It was never going to be the same having to all go out individually or in small groups while observing social distancing guidelines instead of our usual spectacle of over 200 helmets setting off together up our hill.

We’ve posted an album of you all on Facebook as we get pictures and we’re hoping you’ll help us to decide who wins the best helmets in the 4 categories we’re awarding prizes for this year. They are adult male and female and junior male and female. Please comment via social media or email us who you think are the best ones. We’ve been able to meet some of our participants who have run at Westbury as they finished and take some pics and share a chat about their efforts. There has been many a bemused dog walker to whom we’ve explained the reason for us all running in crazy head gear!

Our Just Giving page is doing really well and currently standing at an impressive £450, big thanks to everyone for your generosity once again.  We created this to take donations from people who weren’t taking part or wanted to support people who were doing so and had asked us how they could donate.

We’ve drinks bottles donated by Wessex Water for the first 200 entrants as well as the legendary pottery mementos which are being crafted by Trevor at the White Horse Pottery as you read this. He’s under strict instructions to keep them secret, so no sneaking up hoping for a sneaky peek!

Meanwhile, you’ll hopefully recall us writing about Annika our friends serving in the Middle East. She did her run in searing heat while having to wear helmet, face mask and gloves but understandably due to restrictions imposed for security we’re unable to provide a picture of her doing so. Annikas’ friends helped her to raise £300 which is a fantastic effort, thank you to her very much for taking part for her third run with us, we’re keeping a hat trick badge ready for her on her return.

So finally, just a reminder to everyone. There are still quite a few who have signed up that have yet to take part. Please remember, there is no event this year on August 12th, it takes place from as soon as you sign up until 12th August after which we’ll close the event down and start planning for next year which will be our 5th anniversary.  If you’re coming to Westbury to do your run, please let us know when and we might be able to come and greet you when you’re done. In the meantime, as soon as things start to normalise we’ll look to get mementos delivered, hopefully in groups in person. Have fun out there, tell your friends to sign up too and we’ll see you all soon.

Download Your Hilly Helmet Bib Now

Part of the fun of any event is getting your race bib right? Sadly being a virtual event, we didn’t order bibs this year but we’ve had a think and decided to offer you a blank to download, print and wear for when you do your Hilly Helmet effort. You’ll have to add your own number, any number you like. Maybe you’ve always wanted to be bib number 1, or just plain have a favourite or lucky number you’ve always wanted to wear. Please click the icon below to download and print off your event bib.

HILLY HELMET BIB 2020

Why We’re Doing This

Meet Kim Wainwright.

Kim is 8 weeks post op from the removal of her meningioma and bone flap and will now wear this helmet until such times as they can replace the plate once everything is ready to do so. She had to go back in after complications and have the plate removed and now finds herself with the funky headgear until the time is right to fit a new plate.

Kim learned about Hilly Helmet from a friend of our event and immediately signed up to do it herself to ‘give me something to aim for’ being her actual words on the matter. We’re thrilled at the prospect of her taking part in an event specifically created to help and highlight the situation she finds herself in and will be following her journey to her participation with great interest.

Kim is no stranger to running and amongst her many events has completed the London marathon and a triathlon, with an impressive haul of medals to prove it pictured above. She’s certainly looking forward to Hilly Helmet and hoping to take part in a half marathon in October and we wish her well in both her recovery and preparations for the events.

 

Annikas’ Challenge

Hi everyone. It’s our pleasure to introduce Helmeteer Annika.

A senior NCO in the Royal Air Force, Annika is currently serving on detachment in the Middle East and despite the intense heat is determined to take part again this year for her third run for us.

She’ll only be allowed to run if the temperature is below 27 degrees and there are some administrative  hoops to go through and some permissions and approvals to get before she can take part but she is determined to do all this so she can help us raise more money for Brain Tumour Support. Here’s why her taking part is so important in her own words:

“I’m Annika and I’m taking part in the Virtual Hilly Helmet event again because I’ve seen the cruelty and devastation that a brain tumour can have on an individual and their family. A close family friend had a brain tumour. I remember experiencing the feeling of helplessness as it slowly stripped this lively, go getting man into something we didn’t recognise. His tumour was inoperable and it was just heart breaking to watch the pain of his family and friends as his health deteriorated.

She continued, “Support charities are so important during this time, helping to support the families, friends and work colleagues in their time of desperate need with counselling and advice both in person via support groups and on the phone. They really helped us and I know they can help others.

When I got to know Robin and he told me his brain tumour story and about The Hilly Helmet Challenge, the event he created to raise funds for Brain Tumour Support, I jumped at the chance to take part. I’m glad I did, I still remember my very first time running in my ice hockey helmet and was amazed and the fantastic inclusive atmosphere. People all dressed up, having a laugh and supporting each other regardless of age or ability, I absolutely loved it.”

I feel privileged to be able to take part despite currently being deployed in the Middle East and especially during these strange times that COVID-19 have brought us.”

Brain Tumour Supports’ mission is to help anyone affected by a brain tumour diagnosis. To be able to do this and help families like ours, they need funding and like many charities currently receive NO government funding at all.

This event is a great way to help while also having fun and spreading awareness, so if you fancy the challenge why not give it a go yourself this year? You can walk or run, you just need to be brave enough to wear a helmet while you do it and send in a picture after, maybe even get a friend to join you for moral support too.”

We’re so pleased to have Annikas’ support and will update you on her run and will report on it as soon as copy and pictures are approved for publicity.

Friends and colleagues are supporting Annika via the just giving page set up for those wishing to donate to the charity via the event. Maybe you have a friend taking part you’d like to show your support for walking or running while wearing a helmet?

You can donate via our page www.justgiving.com/hillyhelmet4 and when donating give them a name check or a good luck message.

Latest News

With many mass participation running events being cancelled this year, converting Hilly Helmet to a virtual event was a tough decision but the only choice if we were going to be able to try to continue to back Brain Tumour Support again in 2020. Those already entered have had their entries converted to the virtual event with some stating they were happy for us to just donate their entry fee to the charity this year.

With no actual event to marshal this year we’ve been able to open virtual entries up to include junior runners for the first time, as well as offering specially priced family entries.

We’re pleased to report numbers are doing well with almost 90 signed up and it would be great to push this number as high as we can again this year. Please remember as it is a virtual event this year you can take part in your own neighbourhood at a time that suits you, and don’t forget your helmet! (and your camera) We’ve four best helmet prizes up for grabs for the adult male and female and the juniors too, so give it your best shot.

As usual, we’re indebted to our event partners, all of whom provided funds towards this years’ event. We’ve been in discussion with them all and received confirmation they all plan to back us once again next year while also picking up the tab for this year.

They are:

Stark Ecology

The West Wilts Magazine

Mike Sargeant Stone Wall Services

Remember, everyone taking part this year will get a special pottery memento which will be a little different to previous years. In addition, the first 200 sign ups will also get a drinks bottle provided by Wessex Water. Mementos and bottles will be distributed once restrictions on social distancing are reduced. With mementos ordered normally arriving in August we should start delivering them around that time. Please remember to send us photos of you taking part in your helmets so we can share them. We’ve already had them start coming in and as expected there are some great efforts among them.

All runs/walks are to be completed by Wednesday August 12th, the date we originally scheduled for the run this year. Pictures and proof of participation can be emailed to robin@orangehelmetevents.org.uk

Helmet Happenings

As we reach the end of week 8 of the lock down we have started to see restrictions lifting but mass gatherings remain a no no and it’s likely to continue to be that way for some time yet. This was a big factor when making the decision to switch our annual August event to a virtual one and we’re encouraged with a good few sign ups over the last week or so.

With the event also open to juniors for the first time this year we were thrilled to get our first ever junior signups this week. Since then we’ve had more interest in junior entries so we hope to see them increasing the junior entry in due course. Don’t forget, we’ve a  family ticket on offer this year too for two adults and two children at a discounted price over individual entries. Please contact us via email at robin@orangehelmetevents.org.uk  for a code to enable entry for all junior entrants, family ticket or otherwise.

Meanwhile, how are your helmets coming on? We’re looking forward to seeing the first of our Helmeteer pictures, will you be the first? Don’t forget, there are prizes for the best male and female seniors and junior helmets. It’s pretty warm out there for activities in helmets right now, so please take care and make sure you don’t over heat.

Back in 2015-2016 Hilly Helmet founder Robin-Mark wore his helmet all the time including while running and had no choice about it as he waited for the titanium plate to be fitted where the top of his skull had been removed. As you can see in the picture at the top, he got warm while doing so on occasion, hence why we’ve kept the distance down to one that is manageable for everybody. Robin’s longest run in the Helmet was the Bath Half in 2016 where he set himself the target of under 90 minutes, completing it in 89:56. We hope you enjoy taking part in our virtual event this year, please tell you friends all about it so they can get involved too.