Water-borne Comedy Challenge. Ashville Junior School teacher Ian Dimmick is given a helping hand putting his bath raft together by his class
Water-borne Comedy Challenge. Ashville Junior School teacher Ian Dimmick is given a helping hand putting his bath raft together by his class

Ashville College Teacher Brings Back Fridge For Water-Borne Comic Relief Fund-Raising Caper

22 March 2017

A Harrogate school teacher who two years ago undertook a bizarre Comic Relief fund-raising challenge by hitch-hiking around Yorkshire with a fridge is back – and so too is his trusty domestic appliance!

But for this year’s caper, Ian Dimmick, from Ashville Junior School, will be going a step further by attempting to get the fridge from the source of the River Nidd, to the confluence of the River Ouse and out to the North Sea, via The Humber Estuary some 150-miles away!

Loosely-based on Jerome K Jerome’s book, Three Men in a Boat, Mr Dimmick’s “One Man in Three Boats” adventure will begin at 9.30am on Thursday, March 23, and, if all goes to plan, will conclude in the North Sea at sunset the following day.

Together with his fridge, the Year 6 teacher will begin his challenge by trekking up Great Whernside, 615m above sea level, to where the Nidd rises. He will then hitch-hike to Pateley Bridge where he will attempt to launch his first boat – a “bath-raft” – constructed by the school’s maintenance team and put together by his class.

Next stop is York, where Mr Dimmick and his fridge will be joined by Ashville College Headmaster, Mark Lauder. The pair are borrowing a rowing boat from York Rowing Club, and will then row a stretch of the River Ouse, starting from St Peter’s Steps in the city centre concluding at Naburn Lock.

For the third and final stage of the Comic Relief fund-raiser, which Mr Dimmick hopes will raise in excess of £1500, he will either beg or borrow – but not steal – a sea-worthy vessel to transport him and the fridge under the Humber Bridge, into the Humber estuary and out into the North Sea.

Mr Dimmick said: For a while now I’ve been thinking of how I could top my last Comic Relief challenge, when I took my fridge to well-known Yorkshire landmarks.

This time I am doing a One Man, Three Boat challenge, which will be a lot tougher than travelling by road. In addition to navigating the rivers, I will asking people to sponsor additional challenges. These could be anything from standing outside York Minster with my fridge to getting the fridge to Brimham Rocks!

I’ve had two years to recover from the last challenge. It was hard work, but well worth it. And thanks to the generosity of parents, colleagues and supports, it raised £2,000.

I’m lucky to have a network of volunteers following me to ensure I stay safe at all times and to ensure I raise as much money as possible for this great cause.

I’m also grateful to Headmaster Mark Lauder who, as a former member of the Oxford University rowing team, will be giving me invaluable advice when we hit York.


Those wishing to sponsor Mr Dimmick can do so via his Just Giving page, found at:



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