AN OPTICIANS laboratory manager had a sight to savour as he successfully complete a skydive for charity – channelling the spirit of his late great uncle.

Chris Cornell, who works at Specsavers in Winchester, took part in The Big Jump for the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB).

The challenge offered a strong family connection on his way to raising more than £800 for the charity along the way.

His great uncle Sidney Cornell was in the 7th Battalion Parachute Regiment, based at nearby Bulford Camp, between 1943 and 1945 before sadly being killed in action in Germany.

Mr Cornell faced his nerves – including a fear of heights – at Old Saram Airfield near Salisbury, Wiltshire.

"The jump was a great success and we were blessed with perfect weather for parachute jumping on the day," he said. "It was a fantastic experience. As you might expect, the worst bit was sitting on the edge just before we fell, but after that it was awesome.

"It seemed a fitting tribute to my great uncle Sidney to do a tandem skydive for such a good cause in his honour, even though I hate heights. Having spent much of my career – over 30 years – working in optics, I know how amazing the work that the RNIB does is, and am really pleased I was able to do my bit to support them."

Krupesh Barchha, store director at Specsavers Winchester in the High Street, said: "We are all really proud of Chris for having taken on this challenge.

"The RNIB is an amazing charity, and his family connection to parachute jumping made this an amazing personal challenge for him too. We are delighted to see he has raised so much money for such a good cause."