Hapkido group’s 40,000 kick challenge for Maisy

Craig Hutley and Kevin Sanford with Thetford Hapkido Club

Craig Hutley and Kevin Sanford with Thetford Hapkido Club - Credit: Archant

A martial arts group turned a town centre into their dojo as they pulled off 40,000 kicks to raise money for a three-year-old girl with a terminal degenerative disorder.

Thetford Hapkido club took over the town's King Street square with a hi-octane performance in an attempt to raise money for Maisy Hutley.

Maisy, from Thetford, was diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy at 15 months old, a condition which affects 1 in 6,000 children.

Kevin Sanford, Kuk Sool Hapkido instructor, said he had been looking for a cause to back when he heard of Maisy's plight, with parents, Craig and Hayley, constantly needing money for specialist equipment for their daughter.

Mr Sanford said: 'I was born and bred in Thetford and I'm always on the look out for people to help out.

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'A friend got in touch and told me about Maisy and I just felt like we could do something to help.'

More than £21,000 has already been raised by the Hutleys for a wheelchair, with a series of event running since last year.

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Mr Sanford said the Hapkido group would be adding to that total by contributing members' £25 membership fees to Maisy's cause.

Mr Hutley said the family were touched by Mr Sanford's generosity.

'We didn't even know Kevin and he got in touch with me out of the blue through a friend.

'It's great and anything we can raise is a great help,' he said.

The group of around 20 members, aged between four and 64, performed kicks for three hours in the centre of town.

Fund-raisers did their bit with charity buckets while the group took turns to kick.

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