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​Thrill seeking fundraisers take on zip wire for the Stroke Association

Press release   •   Feb 22, 2017 14:38 GMT

Over 300 fun-seeking fundraisers will take part in a zip slide across the River Tyne on Saturday 04 March, to raise vital funds for the Stroke Association.

Adrenaline junkies will descend almost 1,000ft from the roof of the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art to the opposite side of the River Tyne.

Among the fundraisers is 29-year-old Emma Muckian, a Learning Support Assistant from Red House Farm. Emma was inspired to take part in the Stroke Association’s Zip the Tyne after her grandmother, Betty Barnes, had a stroke in 2000, while on holiday in Benidorm. Betty’s stroke left her without the use of her right arm and leg, and in need of one-to-one support. Sadly, Betty passed away in 2015 and Emma is now fundraising in her memory.

Emma said: “The Zip the Tyne fundraiser actually falls on my grandma’s birthday so it seemed fitting to raise funds in her memory on this day. The Stroke Association supported my grandparents and now I want to help other families affected by stroke get the support they need. I’m absolutely terrified and keep thinking someone will have to push me off!”

Also joining the zip liners is Susan Kerr, 49, and her team of 12 other fundraisers made up of family and friends. They’re taking part in the Zip the Tyne for the second year running, after each being affected by strokes in different ways.

Susan’s mother and mother-in-law have both survived strokes. She said: “They are both inspirational and now our team is hoping to raise £1,000 to help support other stroke survivors. It’s crucial that there are funds for stroke research, prevention and awareness as well as ongoing support for people affected by this devastating condition. Although we’re nervous, it will be a case of mind over matter and I’m sure I’ll be whooping my way across the River Tyne on the day!”

Kelly Knighting-Wykes, Community and Events Fundraising Manager at the Stroke Association, said: “With around 1.2 million people across the UK living with the devastating impact of stroke it is vital that we have people to raise funds and help us conquer stroke. We’re looking forward to cheering our participants on as they zip across the River Tyne. We’re calling on event more thrill seeking fundraisers to take part and help us raise money to fund vital research, support people affected and prevent stroke.”

Over 5,500 people have a stroke in the North East each year, and more than 16,200 people in the area are living with a disability after a stroke.

Zip the Tyne takes place on Saturday 04 March 2017. It costs £15 to register with discount available for teams of 10 or more, and participants are asked to raise £100 per person. Visit for more information.

  • A stroke is a brain attack which happens when the blood supply to the brain is cut off, caused by a clot or bleeding in the brain. There are more than 100,000 strokes in the UK each year; that is around one stroke every five minutes. There are over 1.2 million people in the UK living with the effects of stroke. 
  • Stroke Association is a charity. We believe in life after stroke and together we can conquer stroke. We work directly with stroke survivors and their families and carers, with health and social care professionals and with scientists and researchers. We campaign to improve stroke care and support people to make the best recovery they can. We fund research to develop new treatments and ways of preventing stroke. The Stroke Helpline (0303 303 3100) provides information and support on stroke. More information can be found at