PADIHAM’S star striker Paul Fildes can never be accused of going down too easily on the field – but is ready for a winning dive later this month.

The hotshot will plunge some 14,000 feet from a plane in a tandem skydive – and hopes to raise thousands of pounds for Pendleside Hospice in doing so.

Fildes was bought the skydive as a present for his 30th birth-day – and he has decided to raise cash for the hospice, which is in Colne Road, Reedley, where his grandfather died 10 years ago this month.

“My mate Mikey Jones bought me the jump,” said Fildes. “And I thought if I was going to leap out of the plane, I might as well do it for a special cause.

“My granddad died there 10 years ago and they do a great job at the Hospice but have to raise all their own money so it’s a great cause.”

Fildes will leap out of the plane over Cockerham, near Cartmel in the Lake District, on April 26 – and he laughed: “I try to stay on my feet on the football field but I am looking forward to this dive.

“I can’t wait for it and it will be a great experience.”

The hospice costs £3.2 million per year to run. A grant provides approximately 25 per cent of running costs but the balance, over £2.35 million, is raised locally.

Anyone wishing to donate can visit the website.