If you can't bear heights, then look away now...

PUBLISHED: 17:21 12 June 2009 | UPDATED: 21:48 31 May 2010

TEDDY bears risked life and limb by parachuting off Newport Church tower in a bid to raise money for essential building repairs. Children from across the village collected sponsorship money for the chance see their much-loved bears float down from the diz

TEDDY bears risked life and limb by parachuting off Newport Church tower in a bid to raise money for essential building repairs.

Children from across the village collected sponsorship money for the chance see their much-loved bears float down from the dizzy heights of the church tower on Saturday.

Revd Dr Barbara Sherlock, vicar of St Mary's Church in Newport, said: "It was a really successful day and we have raised in the region of £3000.

"We must have had about 60 or 70 bears of all different shapes and sizes parachute from the top of the tower. Some landed in trees and neighbouring gardens, but they were all safely collected."

More than 200 people attended the event which ran from 11am to 2pm and also included a barbeque, tea and cake stall, face painting, plant stall and a raffle.

Every child whose teddy bear took part in the parachute jump had the opportunity to tell the crowd about the history of their bear.

"By the end of the day I think we had sold out of everything," said Revd Sherlock. "We are really grateful to everyone who came to the event or sponsored a bear."

The fundraising committee is attempting to raise about £500,000 to pay for much-needed repair work on the ancient building. The next event on October 4 will be a football match at Saffron Walden FC's Catons Lane ground featuring former Arsenal players.

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