Day five reached new heights for the Sip and the team, putting the disappointment of Thursday behind them. This time descent was order of the day, with twenty four hours of abseiling at the Exchange Flags building in Liverpool city centre. A historically prominent building, used during the second world war as a command centre for marine fleet, it posed as the ideal base for day five, after a late scramble to secure a new venue from the Riverside Stadium in Middlesbrough.
Originally planned for day one of the challenge, the abseil was moved to day five to allow for a new venue to be sourced and risk assessed. We must thank one of our primary sponsors at this stage, Opal Access, for their part in organising the switch in location at such short notice. Fortunately for Sip and the team, the company had previously provided rope access services at that location, and were in contact with the owners to arrange the day on our behalf. They played a huge part in the abseil going ahead without a hitch (no pun intended) and for that we will be forever thankful.
The team arrived in Liverpool late in the morning on Friday, following up with a safety briefing before the days activities could commence. Through the day and over a twenty four hour period, Sip abseiled and descended the building continuously under the watchful eyes of either Lee or Kenny, both experienced rope access experts. In total, Sip descended the building over one hundred times, on one hundred and five occasions to be precise. With the structure standing at 37 metres in height, this calculates to nearly 4000 metres descended in the day, working out to an average of over four descents per hour.
A donation collection and information point was setup at the base of the abseil, with members of the team also taking part in the abseil through the day, including event supporter and mountaineering legend Alan Hinkes OBE. The local crowds were fantastic and we thank everyone for their kind words and generous donations. Music through the evening and packed bars with an atmosphere below were exactly what Sip needed at this stage of the challenge, having not now slept for over a hundred hours.
Next to the penultimate day, day number six, and twenty four hours of paddling on the Ripon Canal in Yorkshire, the end now in sight. Watch a video from Sip at the start of today's abseil below, and check back tomorrow for more news from this incredible event of stamina and endurance.