Inspiration for Life Newsletter, September 2015

Graduation 2015

Graduands and guests observed a minute’s silence at the 2015 Physics & Astronomy ceremony in memory of Tim Richardson. The students receiving their degree awards were the last group of undergraduates to have been taught by Tim, and a number of those receiving their doctorates on the day had also worked closely with him.

Two students from the department received prizes at the graduation celebration: Lokesh Gorung was awarded the Tim Richardson prize for voluntary work, in honour of his fundraising for the victims of the Nepal earthquake, and Benjamin Mouncer received the Tim Richardson memorial prize, to mark his achievement in completing his studies despite major obstacles.


Fundraising News

Since we started Inspiration for Life, people have come up with all sorts of ways to raise funds for us. 10k runs, half and full marathons, plant sales and cake sales, bike rides and art shows. But this is a first…

James’s Sock Challenge

James Dash, a former student in the department, tells us about his ‘sock challenge’, which raised £280 for Inspiration for Life:

‘So, a little on my “sock challenge”. During my two and a half years at work I’ve gained a bit of a reputation for wearing some pretty funky socks in the office. I decided in February of last year that I was going to set myself a sock challenge that would last for a year. I came across a website that showed a whole host of bizarre and unique national days (you’d be surprised at how many national days this site claims there are, although I suspect many of them are not British) such as “Elephant Appreciation Day”, “National Watermelon Day” and “Lost Sock Memorial Day”. Each week I had to choose one of these bizarre days that was unique to that week and wear a pair of socks to represent that day. I initially did it for a bit of fun but then my colleague mentioned that if I were to do the challenge for charity then he would sponsor me and he suspected that others would do the same. After gauging interest in the office I managed to find around 15 people to sponsor me. Each week I would wear a pair of socks to represent one of the bizarre and unique days and my colleague would judge whether or not they represented the day well enough. If he agreed that they did then each of my sponsors would donate a sum to my total, if he didn’t agree that the socks represented the day well enough then I would have to donate money to the total.  A year later and with a wardrobe containing over 52 pairs of socks I had managed to pass 45 weeks of the sock challenge and had raised £560. I decided to split the money I had raised between two charities. Inspiration for Life was an obvious charity for me as I had gotten on well with Tim during my time at the university and was in communication with him up until a few months before his sad passing. He did a lot to inspire me during my time as a student in the Physics department and so it is with great pleasure that I am able to donate £280 to this charity.

Many thanks James – we’re very impressed, and grateful!

Endcliffe Park TenTenTen

We’re fielding a team of runners again for the Endcliffe Park 10k on 18 October, which raises funds for Weston Park Hospital Cancer Charity. Signed up so far are:

Jacob Albon, Sarah Browne, Clea Carroll, Ash and Ines Henriques Cadby, Ana Morales Garcia, Liam Hardy, Susan Jarvis, Cath Jackson, Martin McAllister, Paula Meth, Fran Marshall, Anneka Nelson-Girtchen, Greg Oldfield, Fabio Pontecchiani, Jon Perkin, Nicola Strafford, Dave Sahman and Lee Thompson

We’re running in memory of Tim Richardson and Victoria Henshaw, and you can support us here:

Supporting the Snowdon Trust

Inspiration for Life has again made a contribution to the Snowdon Trust’s work in supporting students with disabilities. This year, we’re helping Jenny, who’s doing a PhD in Applied Maths & Theoretical Physics at Cambridge University. She has muscular dystrophy and uses a powered wheelchair, and because she’s an EU national she misses out on the statutory disability funding that she would get if she was a UK resident. The Snowdon Trust grant is helping to fund some of her personal support costs. You can find out more about the work of the Trust on their website:, and about some of the students they’ve helped, including Jenny, here:

Board of Trustees News

All of us at Inspiration for Life are extremely grateful for all of the support that Ruth Arnold has given us as a trustee. She’s stepped down from the Board now, but will continue to be a friend of the charity.   Her place on the Board has been taken by Dr Chris Sexton, Director of Corporate Information and Communication Systems at UoS, and we’re looking forward to working with her in the future.

Congratulations to our Treasurer, Mike Weir, and his partner Kim, on the birth of their son, Leopold Antony Mones Weir, on 26 July.


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