Eastbourne 80-year-old scales 02 for charity

Rowena and her grandson Harry on top of the O2 Arena.
Rowena and her grandson Harry on top of the O2 Arena.

An Eastbourne woman celebrated her 80th birthday by walking over London’s 02 arena and asking for sponsorship instead of presents.

Rowena Minns turned 80 in May and marked the occasion by crossing the walkway, suspended 52m above ground level, with her grandson.

She raised a total of £5,000 for St Wilfrid’s Hopsice and in particular the Bradbury Wellbeing Centre.

Rosanna Boulton, one of Rowena’s four children, said, “If she can do it at 80, there’s nothing to stop anyone else raising money for the charity. We are very proud.”

The cause is close to the family’s heart as Rowena’s late husband Dennis worked for The Bradbury Trust which supports St Wilfrid’s.

Grandmother of six and great-grandmother of four Rowena donned a safety harness and did the hour-long climb with her youngest grandson, 13-year-old Harry Boulton.

This was the second of two large donations Rowena has made to the hospice, according to staff.

James Bloomfield, digital communications officer at St Wilfrid’s, said, “She is a marvellous woman, undaunted by her age. What she has done for the hospice is quite incredible.”

Rowena’s daughter said her mother would like to thank everyone who has donated to the cause.