Run is a chaotic mix of colour and fun

Colour chaos event at RAF Wittering'Photo: Lee Hellwing
Colour chaos event at RAF Wittering'Photo: Lee Hellwing
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More than 200 people took part in the 5km Colour Chaos run at RAF Wittering on Sunday, the first to be held on an active RAF Station.

The event was enormous fun, raised vital funds for the RAF Association and took place entirely within the Cambridgeshire Station.

Participants, who ran, jogged, danced and walked along the track, were plastered in multi-coloured corn-starch as they navigated the circuit.

Course highlights included passing the wood where Harriers used to take off and land, a Harrier and military vehicles parked along the route, and a turn round the compass swing where aircraft compasses are calibrated.

Clouds of vibrant, fluorescing blue, green, pink, orange and purple colour billowed and swirled around the track. The powder clung to adults and children who could barely contain their laughter.

RAF personnel Chris and Nicola Stafford reached the end of the course with Chris barely able to see out of his sunglasses. Nonetheless, they were both very happy indeed. Chris said: “It was a really, really good laugh, absolutely.”

Station Commander Group Captain Tony Keeling and his son Tom got into the spirit of the occasion and the Air Cadets, who volunteered to support the event made sure they were both thoroughly coated.

Group Captain Keeling said: “It’s been fantastic fun today, we wouldn’t have missed this for anything. Sure, it’s been a lot of work to organise and we’ve got some tidying up to do, but you look around and see all these smiling faces.

“It’s been well worth it – and all for a great cause with the RAF Association.”

Every pound raised will go towards projects that help members of the RAF family, particularly the Storybook Wings initiative, where serving parents record their children’s favourite bedtime stories before going away on active service.

Rachel Huxford, director of fundraising and training at the RAF Association, said: “This inaugural Colour Chaos event was a wonderful, fun-filled family day out in a unique location and we have had interest from other RAF stations which want to run their own – so we hope this will grow.”

The Storybook Wings initiative has been used by more than 2,300 families since its inception in 2009 and on average 400 stories are recorded each year.

Flight Sergeant Wayne Swiggs, a serving RAF dad who uses the Storybook Wings scheme, said: “It’s always tough being away from my family, so I’m glad that my sons are able to hear my voice through Storybook Wings. Funds raised through the ‘Colour Chaos’ event will help parents like me keep our young children happy and reassured during time spent apart.”

After completing the run, participants were awarded a commemorative medal.