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Fundraising ramblers tackle the Three Peak Challenge
7:40am Monday 17th September 2012 in News
ALMOST a thousand hikers ‘walked the chalk’ to raise money for a nursing charity yesterday.
The huge crowd of charitable trekkers pulled on their walking gear to take on the Three Peaks Challenge in aid of Iain Rennie Hospice at Home.
The walkers took on either the five, nine or gruelling 18 mile jaunt across Whiteleaf Cross, Coombe Hill and Ivinghoe Beacon on Sunday morning.
Among the crowd was David Coles, an Iain Rennie volunteer of six years, who not only marshalled at the event but used it as a warm up to a fundraising trek to the Mount Everest base camp.
He said: “It is one of the best events we do, it’s a great atmosphere, really friendly, probably my favourite of the year.
“I’m a little worried about Everest because of the altitude but hope to do it. I went to India last year and was asked to do it, and in a moment of madness I said yes. I will be flying back on my 70th birthday.
“Fundraising has obviously got a value but you can’t put a price on giving people the choice to be able to be cared for at home.
“You have to make a new life for yourself, as not only do you lose your partner, you lose your purpose in life – it has virtually saved my life, I’ve got more friends now then I’ve ever had.”
Norwegian-born Hedda Baglo, 62, lost her husband Geoff to cancer a year ago. They had previously taken part in the Three Peaks Challenge.
She said: “I wanted to support the hospice as it is absolutely fantastic.
“They created the safety net we needed, being a nurse myself, I can see the value of having such a fantastic organisation.”
After bumping into walkers taking part in the challenge last year, Prime Minister David Cameron threw his backing behind the charity this week.
He said the care and service hospices provided was “immense”.
Iain Rennie’s director of fundraising Gillian Barnett was thrilled with the amount of people who took part and explained what importance the money raised by the intrepid ramblers means to the charity.
She said: “This is our major event, we’re delighted that almost 1000 have signed up.
“It brings in £75,000 - that’s two nurses salaries - so it is absolutely vital, especially when the amount of people requiring our service has gone up 25 percent, so we simply couldn’t do it without the community.”
Visit www.irhh.org for more information about the charity.
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