TWO intrepid Merry Hill security guards have raised more than £1,500 for the Midlands Air Ambulance Charity after completing the The Fan Dance - a gruelling test of endurance in the Brecon Beacons.

Chad Baxter and Matthew Barker, from Dudley, who both work as security guards at the Merry Hill shopping centre, took on the arduous 24km hike over the Pen Y Fan mountain - which follows the route aspiring SAS and SBS members take during the Special Forces selection process.

Their initial fundraising target was £500 but the pair smashed it and have raised £1,380, plus an additional £196 collected through Gift Aid, taking their total figure past the £1,500 mark.

The money raised will help to fund seven missions in the charity’s two critical care cars.

Pam Hodgetts, corporate partnerships manager for the Midlands Air Ambulance Charity, said: “Our vitally important emergency service has grown significantly over the last 30 years and it’s thanks to local partners like Merry Hill and their dedicated members of staff, like Chad and Matt, that we are able to carry out 13 lifesaving missions every single day.

"We are truly grateful to them for undertaking the challenge on our behalf.”

Chad and Matt, both from Dudley, trained around Himley and Sedgley in advance of the testing hike, over the highest mountain in the Brecon Beacons, which they managed to complete in six hours and 27 minutes.

Matt said they decided to support the Lye based charity, which receives no government funding, as "none of will ever know when we will need the air ambulance".

He has issued a "massive thank you" to all those who have donated so far and said donations can still be made until May 4.

Anyone wishing to help add to their fundraising total can make a donation online at