Steeton and Silsden skateboarders’ capital day out boosts charity

Keighley News: Taking part in the London skateboarding event are, from left, Michael Laidler, Johnny Phillips and fellow entrant, Shajeem Habeeb Rahman Taking part in the London skateboarding event are, from left, Michael Laidler, Johnny Phillips and fellow entrant, Shajeem Habeeb Rahman

A pair of friends raised more than £300 for a good cause by taking part in a Christmas-themed 25-mile skateboard across London.

Johnny Phillips, 30, from Steeton, and 21-year-old Michael Laidler, from Silsden, completed the five-hour ‘Santa Cruise’ in aid of the charity Children’s Heart Federation.

Sunday’s course took them from Hyde Park Corner to Windsor Castle.

The occasion was organised by a group called Long-boarding for Little Hearts, and was created by the father of a girl who was born with a serious heart condition.

Mr Phillips said more than 40 skaters took part, raising a combined sum of more than £3,000.

“It was easier than we’d expected,” he said. “I didn’t realise how flat it was going to be – skateboarding 20 miles to Leeds is harder than 25 miles in London!

“I was also surprised at how well organised it all was – there were people on in-line skates going ahead to clear the junctions.”

Mr Phillips added: “We were both in costume – I was dressed as a Christmas tree, and Mike was wearing a Rudolph the Reindeer onesie!

“The weather was perfect. It was a nice, crisp, overcast day, which is what you want for skating, and the pavements were dry.”

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