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Local heroes' full throttle Xmas treat

PUBLISHED: 15:33 16 December 2009 | UPDATED: 09:17 12 August 2010

YOUR Bromley Times teamed up with famous Kent motor-racing circuit Brands Hatch to give a group of deserving readers some once in a lifetime thrills. We asked you to nominate someone special in your life who had dedicated their time to helping others or

YOUR Bromley Times teamed up with famous Kent motor-racing circuit Brands Hatch to give a group of deserving readers some once in a lifetime thrills.

We asked you to nominate someone special in your life who had dedicated their time to helping others or suffered a particularly difficult time this year and needed a pick-me-up.

And we helped deliver the perfect, full throttle festive treat on Sunday for Beckenham-based scout leader Chris Elmer, lollipop lady Leonara Power, of Burnt Ash Lane, Bromley and Northfleet-born pump engineer Stuart Cox.

Mr Elmer and Mrs Power were given a taste of life in the fast lane in Brands' RaceMaster experience, which starts with a brief tuition in a super quick BMW M3 before you take over the wheel yourself.

The fun culminates with some high-octane laps in a single-seater sports car.

Edward Jones, 13, was also treated to a YoungDrive! experience for his kind-hearted nomination of Mr Elmer.

Edward told us in his letter of recommendation how Mr Elmer had been a scout leader for the past 10 years and in that time had organised a variety of weekly events and activities for him and his friends.

Edward explained how Mr Elmer's long-time friend and fellow scout leader Rob Prendergast had died last month after a long illness, adding: "Chris is very sad. I am sad too."

And Mr Elmer, 31, from Barnmead Road, Beckenham, admitted he "was touched" by Edward's nomination.

He said: "It was very sweet of him. It's been a tough year for the whole group, so this is a great way to finish it.

"The experience was really impressive. I've never driven anything with this kind of power."

Mrs Power, 46, who gives up her time as a lollipop lady in the Downham area, was nominated by her daughter Latotya, 16, who described her mother as a "saint in society".

Mrs Power said: "I was very surprised and excited, but mostly pleased for Latoya for putting the time in to nominate me. I always wanted to drive a really fast car.

"It was a great day. I'm going to give Latoya a big kiss for this."

l Brands Hatch is offering a festive discount of up to £31 on driving experiences purchased before December 24, with limited edition Christmas RaceMaster vouchers - valid for the first three months of 2010 - on sale for £149.

YoungDrive! vouchers are also available for £79.

The final postage date for pre-Christmas orders is Friday, December 18, however, Brands Hatch is also offering a 'print at home' email voucher service.

For more information, call: 0870 950 9000 or visit www.msvdrivinggifts.com.

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