On the 5th to the 8th of December this year, four intrepid members of the Workspace team ventured off to the Swedish town of Kiruna in the Arctic in support of London-based charity Kids Company. Kiruna lies 150km north of the Arctic Circle. The temperature can drop to minus 30 degrees and, during winter, the town only sees five hours of twilight a day. Dale, Lucia, Alphie and Tim told us a little more about the challenge.

On arrival, it seems as if the Workspace team were thrown straight into it. Lucia, a centre manager at Light Bulb, said that 'The whole expedition felt sort of unreal till we’ve reached Kiruna airport. It's one of the smallest airports that I’ve been to so far.'


Tim, who's in the IT department, may have been to the Arctic before but it was still a bit of a shock:

'We landed in Kiruna. They immediately put overalls on us and even though it was 4pm, we had to wear headlamps. We were led outside where there were 100 dogs barking.'

And it didn't get any easier. Dale, who's in operations, describes the camping arrangements: 'We were in cabins with no water or heating. You could only wash by going to the sauna or rubbing yourself in the snow.'

Alphie, who's in Accounts, enjoyed his first time on skis: 'You can't stop because as soon as you do, the ice freezes. And you have to crunch ice to get your gloves back on.' They took five hours and twenty-two minutes to complete the cross country skiing but they were the first team to do so all together.

Dale summed it up: 'It was great to experience the collaboration between departments. The trip challenges you mentally and physically - it's dark; it's cold; and there's skiing. It was all about finishing together, motivating each other and supporting one another.

They raised a wopping £7635.72 for Kids Company.


LUCIA'S PHOTO DIARY

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'The dog sledding challenge was frightening at first as it looked a lot harder than it was. We had an amazing guide with us so she explained everything to us beforehand. We’ve had to do everything ourselves and that included harnessing our dogs. I really enjoyed that part as the dogs were very friendly. We all had our own four dogs with names so it wasn’t too hard to get close to them.'

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'The best part of the dog sledding was the amazing scenery around us, it felt like we were in a dreamland'.

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'Seeing the Northern Lights for the first time in my life was breath taking. They looked like a disco lights on the sky. It must have been around 4pm in the afternoon and already pitch black when we were finishing the cross country skiing competition. That’s when we’ve spotted the Northern Lights for the second time.'

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'Teamwork was key - we all have different qualities and abilities to do things and the trip definitely taught me patience!'

Workspace staff were raising money for Kids Company, a charity which provides practical, emotional and educational support to vulnerable children and young people. Find out more here.