Four influential Cumbrians will be aiming for dizzy heights, all for a good cause.

The group of four women, including the the high sheriff of Cumbria and chairwoman of the county council, will be abseiling down Carlisle east fire station’s training tower next month.

High sheriff Marcia Reid Fotheringham; chairwoman of Cumbria County Council Christine Bowditch; Carol Fish, a director at major county law firm Cartmel Shepherd; and Kerrie Higham, who runs charity The Well Communities, which works across Cumbria and Lancashire, have all signed up for the daring adventure.

Their abseil will take place on Saturday, October 12 to coincide with Carlisle east fire station’s free family fun day.

All of the money raised by the four women will be equally divided between the charities that each of them have selected - The Well Communities, People First, Carlisle Mencap - which provide countywide support - and Oak Tree Animals’ Charity near Carlisle.

Mrs Reid Fotheringham said: “This wonderful, crazy idea came about as we were awaiting a visit from Prince Edward earlier this year.

“I stepped away for a few moments and when I returned, I was told about the idea by Christine Bowditch, and I am never going to say no to a good idea. I am up for giving anything a go, especially for the right reasons.

“Now all I need to do is work on my upper body strength and find a place to train where nobody can see me.”

Christine Bowditch said: “As a parent of a child with severe learning difficulties on the autism spectrum, I have a passionate interest in supporting and improving the lives of those with learning difficulties and their families.

“This is why I’m prepared to step over the edge for these people – and hence my idea to do something brave to help raise funds for those in need.

“I’m really excited that these other brave ladies have joined me in my quest to help raise funds for my two chosen charities.”