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Before I moved to America I often worked as a freelance fashion stylist on all manner of campaigns, both in England and on location in places like Cape Town. On many of these assignments I was lucky enough to be assisted by the lovely Pip Edwards, who is now an excellent stylist in her own right here in London.

This January Pip’s family were dealt a devastating blow when Pip’s youngest sister Suzanne was paralysed when the balcony railings she was leaning on gave way and she fell from a hotel roof in Morocco. Just 23 years old and teaching in a surf school, she will now be in a wheel chair for the rest of her life as she is paralysed from just above the waist down.

Pip’s boyfriend George is helping her organise a fund-raising night for Suzanne, and here are his words:

“Whilst it was a terrible accident and she now faces a hugely daunting disability, Suzanne has handled her recovery with great tenacity and came out of hospital in May. While getting some support from the government, there are a multitude of costs arising from adapting to her new way of life that are not covered.

In terms of perspective, the wheel chair given to her by the Government weighs 22Kg, but the special lightweight one she needs to live an independent life weighs 7kg. The difference of nearly 15kg is considerable when you are hauling the wheelchair across your body by yourself into the car you have only just pulled yourself into. With the right equipment Suzanne will be able to live a 100% independent life- but for her to be able to have that independent life takes money she does not have and her friends & family need to raise.

Costs for a new light weight wheel chair, adaptations to her car, house and vital physio treatments….This is why  Pip and her friends are putting together an event on June 16th at Cargo in London to raise money for her in conjunction with Aspire, the spinal charity.

It will be a fantastic evening of live music, featuring The Correspondents, Mr B The Gentlemen Rhymer, DJs Filth & Splendour, The Duffle Folks and amazing burlesque dancing.


To be honest there are always a million charity events for a thousand fantastic and worthwhile causes. The slight difference is that on this occasion you will be able to see the first hand the difference just a small bit of effort can make. Suzanne will be at the event on JUNE 16th in one kind of wheel chair and by the end of the summer she should be in another thanks to your help.”

If you feel like donating here is the link to the Just Giving page set up for Suzanne by ASPIRE (they make the gift Aid and handle her charitable money) and to which all the money from this night will be donated.

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Sounds like a brilliant night.


I have no idea how much a 7kg wheelchair costs in comparison to a 22kg one but I bet that Social Services would fairly quickly save the additional costs as people like Suzanne would need less support from them to lead the active, independent lives to which they are entitled. A little joined up thinking from government in terms of this expenditure compared to care/support costs as well as the less tangible but hugely important quality of life benefits to Suzanne, her family and friends and to others in her position would be so refreshing – and in the longer term economically sound too!

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