A WOMAN with an incurable disease is saying a “final farewell” to active life by flying in a glider.

Yvonne Foster, who lives in Ampleforth, was diagnosed with Motor Neurone Disease last September.

Motor Neurone Disease affects the nerves in the brain and spinal cord that tell your muscles what to do.

With MND, messages from these nerves gradually stop reaching the muscles, leading them to weaken, stiffen and waste.

Yvonne, who is 85, is aiming to raise funds for a research project into Motor Neurone Disease at the Sheffield Institute of Transitional Neuroscience (SITraN).

She said: “Motor Neurone Disease is a very cruel disease as it is a condition which progressively damages parts of the nervous system leading to muscle weakness.

“I am now housebound and in a wheelchair finding it increasingly difficult to move my arms and legs.

“As yet there is no cure for this disease.

“I have always been a very active person and in the past have enjoyed rock climbing, abseiling, white water rafting, parasailing and paragliding, etc.”

Yvonne has also taught generations of children to swim and wrote a book on the subject, “Hi. . .I Want To Swim”. She said: “I was a swimming teacher for more than 45 years and I did, in fact,teach Robert Peston, the former BBC’s economic correspondent, to dive following his appeal on Radio 4’s PM programme for somebody to take up his challenge.

“As a final farewell to an active life, it is my aim to raise money for a research project into MND at the Sheffield Institute of Transitional Neuroscience by flying in a glider off Sutton Bank and back so that future sufferers may benefit from this important research.”

Yvonne said she was looking forward to the flight, which is due to take place this weekend, weather permitting. “Flying in a glider is one of the things I have never done but always wanted to do,” she said.

“I am really looking forward to it and hope the weather is good. I am not afraid of heights and I am looking forward to the wonderful views.

“I have had a lot of support from family and friends and hope to raise as much as I can into research for MND.”

Anyone who would like to sponsor Yvonne can do so at uk.virginmoneygiving.com/YvonneFoster2