Search

Former Hampstead florist to jump 10,000ft in charity skydive

17:00 11 June 2014

Stephen Swain (right) with his nephew Steven.

Stephen Swain (right) with his nephew Steven.

Archant

A former florist is preparing for a skydive to raise money for a children’s charity which supports his teenage nephew.

Stephen Swain, 46, whose family ran Essex Court Flowers in Hampstead High Street for 20 years, will jump 10,000ft from a light aircraft on June 29 in aid of Families United Network, which supports young people and their families living with disabilities.

Mr Swain, who is now a service co-ordinator for the charity and lives in Hertfordshire, will be joined on the skydive by his 20-year-old nephew Steven.

Steven’s younger brother Teddy, 14, has received support from the charity since being diagnosed with Tourette’s syndrome and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Mr Swain said: “Teddy wasn’t diagnosed for years and because of his behaviour he wasn’t in school for nearly two years. I saw how isolated and introverted he became.

“We take young children out into the community to do things they wouldn’t do with mum and dad, and we run holiday projects nine times a year. Teddy used to come to our youth club and he joins some of our trips.”

At the age of 11, Mr Swain moved to Spedan Close, Hampstead, where his mother still lives, and went on to sell flowers for the family business on the corner of Willoughby Road and Hampstead High Street for 20 years.

The family took over the stall more than 30 years ago from Maggie Richardson who ran it for 60 years. Her work has since been honoured with a plaque on the spot where her stall stood, dubbed Maggie’s Corner.

In 2008, rising rents and competition from Tesco forced the flower-selling business to close.

Mr Swain left several years before the stall’s closure to become a youth worker but has fond memories of famous customers in Hampstead.

“I was very close with Denis and Stella Quilley and Peter Barkworth,” he said. “Glenn Close was living in Hampstead and Denis told her to ‘go and buy your flowers off Steve’.

“Boy George and George Michael were customers, the list is endless. It was a lovely time and I really enjoyed my time.”

Mr Swain has raised £500 in donations to support the skydive so far and is aiming for £800 in total.

He added: “I’m really excited, I can’t wait. I just want to do it now. It’s raising a lot of money and it’s doing a great thing.

“I see first hand the pleasure the children get from the projects we run. Ten pounds pays for one of our volunteers working at one of our clubs each day.”

To support Mr Swain, visit mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/swain1000. For more about Families United Network, visit familiesunitednetwork.org.uk.

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hampstead Highgate Express visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hampstead Highgate Express staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hampstead Highgate Express account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hampstead & Highgate News Stories

27 minutes ago
Nina Martynchyk with her foster mother, Nina B

A young woman who overcame anorexia is organising a conference with the Royal Free Hospital to draw attention to how the condition affects children and teenagers

16:01
Highgate School

Students and staff at Highgate school were reflecting on a very impressive set of GCSE results today, with 88.2 percent of exams receiving a grade of A* or A.

12:41
Hampstead School is in Westbere Road (Pic credit: Google streetview)

The Hampstead School has once again seen its GCSE results improve today, with nearly a quarter of all grades receiving an A* or A grade.

11:53
Hornsey School for Girls

Girls at Hornsey School for Girls were today collecting some stellar GCSE results.

11:44
Sam White has praised William Ellis pupils

The headteacher of William Ellis school, Sam White, was full of praise for his students today after a promising set of GCSE results.

10:56
UCS school

University College School was today celebrating the second best set of GCSE results in its history, with a remarkable 88.6 percent of exams achieving either an A* or A grade.

06:00
GCSE results are out tomorrow

Teenagers across the country face one of the most nerve-racking days of their young lives today with the publication of GCSE results.

Yesterday, 16:11
Mansfield Bowling club is run-down but beloved by residents in Dartmouth Park. Photo: Polly Hancock

Residents are urged to opposed an appeal from developers to build a “luxury” housing developent on the 100-year-old Mansfield Bowling Club, after their plans were rejected

PROMOTED CONTENT

The showroom is located in Hayes

After 25 years as a trade-only business, family-run door manufacturers Composite Door Master are set to open their first public showroom in Hayes this weekend.

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Most read Hampstead & Highgate news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot

Competitions

You could win £15,000 to spend on either their mortgage or a deposit towards the home of their dreams

Wouldn’t it be lovely to have a period of time when you simply don’t have to worry about finding the money each month to pay your mortgage? When you don’t have to put money aside from your monthly income, or worry about having to afford other essential outgoings?

Which book character do you share cleaning habits with?

Whether you have more in common with put-upon Cinderella, emotionally turbulent Jane Eyre, or easily distracted Mole, you’re sure to appreciate that one lucky winner will receive four sessions of free cleaning. Enter our quiz for your chance to win. All runners up will get £10 off their first clean when making a repeat booking.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Hampstead & Highgate Express
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now