MEET a Sheffield lass who’s preparing to take the plunge - twice in a single day.
Siobhan Newton will marry fiancé Martin Miles-Moore on September 19. But she will sidestep the first dance and usual post nuptial celebrations, and instead head to Ponds Forge to complete a charity dive.
The 42-year-old will slip from her wedding dress and into swimming bathers to make the splash from the venue’s gasp-inducing 10 metre top board. Guests who see her tie the knot at Sheffield Registry Office will be invited along to watch her jump just a couple of hours later.
Uncles wanting to get drunk and dance have been told not to worry, though. There’ll still be a disco once she’s dried down and got into a night frock.
“In all honesty, I’m not sure which I’m most nervous about at the moment,” says Siobhan, a business school liaisons officer with Sheffield Hallam University. “On the one hand, this is something I’m vaguely terrified about and still can’t believe I agreed to. But diving from the top board is scary too.”
She is one of a group of top city business professionals who have signed up for the Big Splash to help raise money for St Luke’s Hospice’s £5 million Room To Care appeal for a new in-patient unit. They are all currently being trained by professionals from the Sheffield Dive Club, based at Ponds Forge, in the city centre.
“I’ve always wanted to learn how to dive,” says Siobhan of Nether Edge. “I grew up in the Lake District so spent my childhood jumping into water and swimming but that’s not the same as diving from a 10 metre top board. I want to be a graceful, strong and determined diver but just hitting the water without doing a belly flop will suffice.
“My mother died in March and I wanted something positive to come out of that too and raising money for St Luke’s is something she would have approved of. It will mean breaking into the wedding celebrations but the guests will be able to come along and watch - so that will raise even more money for the hospice.”
And she has the full support of fiancé Martin, a 42-year-old sports physio. He’s happy the day will have the added extra activity and promised to try and ease her nerve - by making the first plunge as easy as possible.
Tickets for the dive at 6pm, which includes a performance by Sheffield Dive Club, available at www.stlukeshospice.org.uk