Sunderland stroke survivor dons Black Cats scarf for Tyne Bridge zip-wire stunt

Steve Hogg, 54, who has had two strokes, abseiling from Souter Lighthouse as part of a charity event raising money for NETA the North East Trust for Aphasia.

Steve Hogg, 54, who has had two strokes, abseiling from Souter Lighthouse as part of a charity event raising money for NETA the North East Trust for Aphasia.

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DOUBLE stroke survivor Steve Hogg donned his lucky Black Cats scarf to complete a white-knuckle zip-wire stunt.

The 55-year-old, from Roker, took part in the daring fundraiser off the Tyne Bridge in aid of the Stroke Association.

“When I got to the top, the lads said they would count ‘1,2,3’ and then I would push off,” he said. “But they caught me by surprise, said ‘1’, and then pushed me off. “I think that helped. I wouldn’t have managed otherwise.

“I’m not a superstitious person usually, but I’m glad I had my scarf.”

After conquering his initial nerves, the Sunderland AFC supporter said he enjoyed the experience, which was over “far too soon”.

“I was zipping towards Newcastle Quayside going faster and faster,” he said. “What a feeling of freedom for about 15 seconds then it was finished. The chap at the other end threw me a rope, which I caught and was hauled in.

“He asked me how it was and I said ‘Can I do it again?’”

Last year, Steve completed an abseil from the side of Souter Lighthouse to raise funds for the North East Trust for Aphasia (NETA), a condition which can affect the ability to speak, understand others, read and write after a stroke.

The task of reaching the ground from the top of the 23m high tower was made even tougher for Steve, as he has no feeling in his right arm, with the strokes he suffered seven and five years ago, also affecting his mobility in right leg and speech.

Steve, who is originally from East Boldon, said: “The zip-wire was arranged by the Stroke Association, which I do a great deal of volunteering for.

“I also volunteer for NETA. They were both amazing experiences.

“I’d do it again any time.

“But as yet, I don’t know what I’ll do next year.

“I’m open to suggestions at the minute.”

Twitter: @sunderlandecho