Forward Engineering Squadron Hair Raising Fund Raiser

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What started out as crew room banter, quickly turned into reality for three brave gentlemen from Forward Engineering Squadron (FES) at RAF Marham.

During a well earned morning break, Sergeant Julie Mael was in a discussion with an arguably vain Sergeant Paul Clarke.

“As charity manager ‘Clarkie’,
hypothetically, how much would
it take to shave off your hair?”
“At least £300”

In hindsight, the answer should have been considerably more than £300.

With a target in sight, Julie set to work. She set the ball rolling and immediately raised some considerable funds. With no option to withdraw the offer ‘Clarkie’ wanted to get others involved, so he proposed that his good friend Sergeant John Luckin should also remove his finely groomed hair, in aid of the FES nominated charity; Scotty’s Little Soldiers.

Another willing volunteer was soon found, as Sergeant Matt Hodges had always fancied a chest wax, but was too scared to admit it. Being on the charity team, Matt wanted to take the event to the next level. With raising as much money in mind, he developed a plan to not only raise a large amount, but to also get the look he’d wanted for years – aerodynamic!

Initial sponsorship pledges came rolling in and all they now needed was two willing volunteers from Hair Force to do the hair removal work. Very kindly, Kelly and Dawn said they would give up their free time and would
gladly do the head shaving and chest waxing.

After weeks of planning, the wait was finally over. Starting off the event, John Luckin went first. Kelly, with a grin on her face, removed what looked like a kilogram of man-pride.

Having no regrets (at this point) he stood up to a round of applause from the crowd gathered in the junior ranks tea bar. Quickly followed by Paul Clarke, the two looked like something from an edgy film. Sporting new
hairstyles, the two had also been growing moustaches for the Movember charity, which only added to their new look. Additional fund raising was led by John, with a team of ‘Mo Bro’s & Sistas’ from FES, as over £650 was raised for Men’s health by growing their facial hair.

With spirits high, Senior Aircraftsman Lewis Ward spontaneously volunteered to wax his legs and Senior Aircraftsman Aiden Brookes parted with his hair, as he wanted to look like one of his favourite SNCOs!

After all the anticipation, the main event was now in the hands of Dawn. Guest auctioneer for the evening was Chief Technician Rob Grossman; he auctioned off individual waxing strips and the money started to flood in. The highest bid, amongst a frenzy of bidding activity, was £40 for the nipple area, there was some money well spent seeing a grown man cry in anguish. Admirably, Matt endured the pain for over an hour, shedding nearly a stone of body weight. With slow motion video footage and some superb photography by Senior Aircraftsman Andy Masson, the memories will never fade.

After the hair loss, food and beverages were provided by Sergeant Jamie Green and his team who did an excellent job, that also added to the fund raising. With the food, head shaving and chest waxing, the entire night was a huge success that generated a very sizeable amount for a very well deserving local charity. Over £1,300 was raised, which will be added to the £700 already generated taking the running total to approximately £2,000. Once the financial year is over, the total amount will be presented to Scotty’s Little Soldiers.

On behalf of Squadron Leader John Richie, Officer Commanding FES and Flight Lieutenant Si Nelson-Kirby, Chairman of the FES Welfare Committee, may we say a huge thank you to all those involved; in particular Kelly and Dawn from Hair Force and Andy for the photography.

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