I had been half-looking for a challenge, and then my wife forwarded me on an email. It talked about a crazy abseil challenge off the ArcelorMittal Orbit Tower, to raise money for Royal Brompton Hospital - who saved my beautiful 3-year old Albie. I was in!

Abseiling is not naturally my thing. I have no irrational fear of heights, but the thought of walking around a ledge at the top of a 100m+ tower (before jumping off to the concrete bottom) is not exactly my cup of tea!!

Compared with the open heart surgeries that Albie has gone through, surely this would be a breeze!!

A couple of weeks of fundraising, with overwhelming donations from so many generous people, meant that I could not back out. Gratefully, the usual business and musings of life kept my mind away from contemplating the jump too much before the big day.

The big day...

Yes, I was nervous. It was a beautiful day, bright sunshine and warm. The thought of the jump was not appealing though, as the Orbit came into sight and grew impressively in size as our car approached the Westfield car park.

Not normally an issue for me, I had to empty my bladder a few times beforehand - surely a sign of being out of my comfort zone!

Thankfully, I was grouped with a couple of other first-time abseilers, so our collective nervousness brought a little group therapy to the situation. And though immensely uncomfortable, particularly for men, the zealousness of all the clips and the harness was very reassuring - even when staggering John Wayne style to the lift that took us up to our fates.

Now, to the jump itself. I knew I didn’t have a choice and just got on with it. Well instructed, I tip-toed around the ropes on the ledge, forcing myself to not look down. I knew that I had some mental reserves to draw upon if needed, but honestly, it was actually a lot of fun. The jump itself, or step off the ledge, was actually okay. Leaning back into my harness, I almost didn’t notice the jump, and was soon enjoying the wonderful views.

After a few minutes of tentative inching down the ropes, I really started to enjoy the experience. And soon I could hear the shouts of “Come on Daddy, you can do it” and “Come on Simon, you can do it” from my children and nieces.

A great day. A great experience. And very honoured to raise so much money for the wonderful Royal Brompton Hospital.

- Simon Moore

>> To read about the day and how much was raised, see our Latest News