It was a bright clear day and as the plane soared skyward William (Paddy) Bates’ nerves held steady.
And as he leapt out of the plane from 10,000ft just over Southwold he said he could see much of East Anglia spread before him as he travelled inland to touchdown from his lift off location at Beccles Aerodrome.
The 76-year-old carried out the skydive for the My WiSH charity, which supports the West Suffolk Hospital, and his stunt has resulted in him raising a total of £1, 318.75 which has been used to purchase two ophthalmoscopes for the hospital’s stroke ward.
Paddy, who lives with his wife Joan, in Gainsborough Road, Stowmarket, was given the skydive as a Christmas gift from his 43-year-old son David, who lives in Barking.
He said: “It was absolutely fantastic. The weather was very good and the people at the aerodrome were also great … the whole experience was very enjoyable and it’s the easiest £1,000 I have earned,” he joked.
He enjoyed the experience so much that he is thinking about carrying out another skydive next year for My WiSH.
Paddy was admitted to the West Suffolk Hospital over Christmas Day and Boxing Day suffering from a minor stroke.
But he was so impressed with his treatment that he decided to carry out the skydive to raise money for My WiSH.
“I was treated so well at the hospital that I felt I just had to do something to give a little bit back,” added Paddy.
Pictured above is Paddy Bates with Jo Floyd, ward manager at the West Suffolk Hospital, in Bury St Edmunds.