Meet the zip lining great gran from Bedford who is showing no signs of slowing down

She may be 78 but Heather Dorling is a woman after adventure.

By Clare Turner
Wednesday, 4th December 2019, 4:42 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th December 2019, 4:43 pm

The Pavenham daredevil has completed the fastest zip wire in Wales and is already looking for the next challenge.

"It's like flying. I couldn't wait to go. It was like being a bird," said the former youth leader. "Though it froze my earring ....and I couldn't speak," she joked.

Heather - who has three children, nine grandchildren and five great grandchildren - first came up with the zip wire idea as a birthday present for her son-in-law.

Heather Dorling

He had wanted to experience the fastest zip line in the world - Penrhyn Quarry - in North Wales near the stunning Snowdon range. Unfortunately, he couldn't make it, so she took her grandson instead.

"I got to watch the view. It was wonderful," said Heather, who now plans to go gliding in a plane as well as ballooning.

And her friends have nothing but admiration for her too.

Susan Phillips, who met Heather through Bromham Slimming World in February 2016, said: "Something to know about Heather is how incredible she is, the last year or so have

Heather Dorling

been so challenging, but she has kept smiling and never slowed down."

She explained that when they first met, Heather was the main carer to her late husband, who had dementia.

"She was so incredibly strong, and still kept everyone smiling and laughing in group each week," she said.

But the real surprise for Susan was when Heather agreed to take the zip wire challenge.

"I can’t tell you how gobsmacked I was when she told me what she was doing," she said. "The photos of her grinning just say it all, she loved it. When I sat and spoke with her she was already reeling through things she wants to do next. Gliding and balloon riding are all on her list.

"78 years old and making no excuses, just going out and living her life to the absolutes fullest."