Fearless 74-year-old takes on wing walk for Moorfields Eye Charity

74-year-old Hackney fundraiser and daredevil Elaine Manna is doing a wing walk for an Islington eye charity. 

74-year-old Hackney fundraiser and daredevil Elaine Manna is doing a wing walk for an Islington eye charity. - Credit: Moorfields Eye Charity

A brave 74-year-old fundraiser is saying thank you to a Finsbury eye charity for saving her sight by strapping herself to a plane.

Pensioner Elaine Manna, from Hackney, is raising money for Moorfields Eye Charity which supports the pioneering work and research carried out by Moorfields Eye Hospital in Finsbury in partnership with University College London (UCL).

Elaine will be taking part in a wing walk on August 22 to say thank you to Moorfields for the eye care she has received at the hospital, having lived with age-related macular degeneration (AMD) for 21 years.

AMD is an eye condition which can lead to vision issues and loss if left untreated. 

Elaine is no stranger to the skies having already sky dived for Moorfields Eye Charity. 

Elaine is no stranger to the skies having already sky dived for Moorfields Eye Charity. - Credit: Courtesy of the Manna family

Elaine said: "By raising the much needed funds for Moorfields, more people living with sight loss can receive the necessary treatment and eye care they need as well as the support they deserve – and that is very important to me.


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"In the darkest of moments, Moorfields has offered me hope and has shown me that there is light at the end of a tunnel.”

For Elaine’s wing walk challenge, she will be strapped to a vintage Boeing Stearman Biplane as it takes off and flies, dives and spins through the air, reaching speeds of up to 130mph. 

Elaine has set up a crowdfunder to raise money for Moorfields. 

Elaine has set up a crowdfunder to raise money for Moorfields. - Credit: Courtesy of the Manna family

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But this is not the first time Elaine has pulled off a daring stunt for the charity. The 74-year-old has also taken part in tandem skydiving and braved the fastest zip wire in the world, Penrhyn Slate Quarry in Wales, to raise funds. 

Robert Dufton, chief executive at Moorfields Eye Charity, said: “Elaine is an inspiration and we can’t thank her enough for her support. Investment in research to speed up discovery of new treatments, innovation in patient care and training is what makes Moorfields and UCL leaders in eye health.

"We’re very grateful to supporters like Elaine for helping to improve the lives of people with sight loss in the UK and globally.”

Elaine Manna, 74.

Elaine has lived with Age Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) for 21 years which can cause sight loss and vision impairment. - Credit: Moorfields Eye Charity

Moorfields Eye Hospital is set to relocate to a new "world leading" HQ in Kings Cross from Old Street, where it has been located for more than a century, Camden granted planning permission in July.

To support Elaine's fundraiser visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/elaine-manna2

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