Feats of Chailey boy ‘Shrimpy’ to buy toys for children’s hospice

Daniel 'Shrimpy' MacDiarmid in Snowdonia with his dad, also called Daniel
Daniel 'Shrimpy' MacDiarmid in Snowdonia with his dad, also called Daniel

A 10-year-old boy who raised thousands of pounds to buy toys for a children’s hospice is now setting his sights on raising even more by taking on The Three Peaks Challenge.

Lewes Old Grammar Junior School pupil Daniel MacDiarmid, known as Shrimpy to his friends, started raising money two years ago doing BMX stunts in order to use sponsorship cash to buy toys for the children in Chestnut Tree House hospice. He raised £500.

A year later he raised £1,000 back-flipping on his BMX and he followed this up by setting off to cycle from Brighton to Portsmouth, raising £1,500 – at the tender age of nine. He did the 50 mile distance in five and a half hours.

Not content with that, in December he headed to Snowdonia in North Wales where he took on the biggest, longest and fastest zipwire in Europe which reaches speeds of 100mph (that’s higher then the Empire State Building!) and is 500m high and 1.5km long – blindfolded.

He raised £2,500 – which he spent on a vast array of toys which he handed over to Chestnut Tree House.

Daniel, from Chailey, said: “It took 50 seconds to travel that 1.5km and my dad did it too. He said we should go blindfolded but then chickened out at the last minute! It was raining so hard it hurt my mouth and I felt like I was in a blizzard but it was worth it.”

He added: “I don’t like people being sad, it makes me want to make things better for them.

“I know that some of the children at Chestnut Tree might not get another Christmas so I wanted to bring as many lovely toys I could to them to make their Christmas brilliant.

“When we brought all the toys to Chestnut Tree – and there were so many that they would not fit on our sofa at home – the children loved it. I saw one girl clapping with delight which was just absolutely lovely.”

He continued: “My next plan is to do The Three Peaks Challenge. A teacher at my school is taking a group of sixth formers up there and hopefully my dad and I are going to go with them – I can’t wait to buy my next load of toys!”

Daniel’s dad, also called Daniel, has helped his son to fund raise by spreading the word on Facebook while Shrimpy has taken every opportunity to ask school friends and teachers for help.

He added: “Mum and dad say they are really proud and happy about what I am doing but what really makes me happy is seeing the results.”

Daniel’s headteacher at Lewes Old Grammar Junior School, Carrie Whyte, said: “Daniel really is quite a remarkable little boy. He can’t bear it when other children are sad and just wants to brighten up their lives for them. As you can imagine, we are incredibly proud of him.”

The Three Peaks Challenge is an event in which participants attempt to climb the highest mountains of England, Scotland and Wales – Scafell Pike, Ben Nevis and Snowdon – within 24 hours.