Ashby dads will race to raise funds for Alfred, 8, in Sunday's first Soap Box Derby in Market Street

By Graham Hill

15th May 2024 | Local News

The Hilltop Dads will be racing in their home made vehicle on Sunday. Photo: Hilltop Dads Facebook page
The Hilltop Dads will be racing in their home made vehicle on Sunday. Photo: Hilltop Dads Facebook page

A group of dads will be taking part in Sunday's Ashby Soap Box Derby to raise funds for a local boy suffering from Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy.

They are taking part in the event - the first of its kind in Ashby - which will see Market Street closed off for the home made vehicles to do their stuff.

The Ashby-based racers call themselves the Hilltop Dads - and the project has brought friends and family together.

But they are also racing for Team Alfred - which aims to raise funds for an eight-year-old Swadlincote-based boy who suffered a brain injury at birth in 2015.

The target is £100,000 so that he can have the intensive treatment he needs to give him the best chance of moving independently one day.

So far, over £93,000 has been raised, and Sunday's event will see them moving closer to getting over the line.

Marcus Dorey is former kart racer, and he says that, aside from the fundraising aspect, the Soap Box Derby promises to be a lot of fun for the town.

He and his team have built their own vehicle for the event, which has been organised by Ashby BID.

Marcus told Ashby Nub News: "I'm a kart racer from my childhood so when I heard about this, I thought this is right up my street.

"I got together with the dads from our school and some were up for it - so there've been plenty of pub planning meetings.

"It's been really nice, our families have been meeting at each other's houses and the kids have been sketching out designs.

"My dad's been helping out with the design of the kart as well.

"Kart racing is a bit of a retro hobby for me so I was really enthusiastic.

"We've enjoyed getting involved and we're looking forward to Sunday."

The group have involved friends and family in the project. Photo: Hilltop Dads Facebook page

The event will be seen by visitors to the town centre for the first time.

Marcus added: "I think the idea is the vehicles race from one end of Market Street to the other.

"As a team, we think we get about three runs down the hill.

"You can go around the chicane or take on the jump at your peril!

"We have some strategy to deal with that. The last I heard, there were about 30 teams down to take part.

"It'll be a family fun day and we know people will be coming from miles around. Local businesses are getting behind it, so it should be good for the town."

Hilltop Dads will also be sponsored by NM Joinery Design on Sunday.

But Marcus says there is also a serious side to his team's participation in the event.

He added: "We're raising money for Team Alfred - Alfred's the same age as my daughter and when we moved to Ashby, my wife met his parents.

"Alfred's desperate to do the same thing other children do, but there's no way to get the treatment needed on the NHS.

"His parents set up the charity to raise the money, and it's been fantastic to see the progress made so far. But it's all self-funded, they're a lovely family and we try to do what we can to support them.

"The more we can do while he's younger, the more he'll be able to do as an adult.

"Everyone chips in, my wife does Christmas crafts, I've covered our camper van in Christmas lights - you may have seen it around Ashby."


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