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Gloucestershire Business News

Ecclesiastical staff have a run-derful time doing ‘marathon’ walk for Longfield Hospice

Staff at insurance company Ecclesiastical have gone the extra mile to raise more than £1,000 for charity.

Members of the Business Payments team set out on a whopping 24-mile sponsored circular walk along the Glevum Way, which started at Beaufort House, the Gloucester headquarters of the specialist insurer.

It is all in aid of Longfield Hospice, a charity that provides care and support for people with life-limiting conditions and their families.

Business expense assistant Kathryn Bell was joined by colleagues Emma Chandler, Rachel Mowbray, Gemma Argent and Stephanie Harrison, along with her husband Harry, for the walk.

She said: "We spent our Ecclesiastical volunteering day at Longfield Hospice last year and were really touched by the work that they do.

"I have always wanted to complete a challenge for charity so I decided to organise a walk around my home city.

"We began training in February and walked parts of the route once a month to increase our fitness and make sure we knew where we were going!

"We were met by various colleagues and family along the route, who topped up our water bottles, provided treats and cheered us on. These included James Dixon from our Birmingham office, whose sister, Lois, is a Longfield nurse."

As the group passed by Staverton Airport, their GPS tracking device showed them that the route was going to be longer than the 24 miles that was stated by the Gloucester Ramblers Association.

Kathryn added: "At that point, Emma, Gemma and I had reached our limit, having walked the number of miles we said we would for the challenge, but Rachel, Steph and Harry found the strength to carry on and walked for almost four more miles to get back to the start."

Rachel and her family have a personal connection with Longfield as the hospice in Minchinhampton cared for Rachel's father.

She said: "It was a huge challenge for everyone. During some really tough points, I was thinking of Dad and the support Longfield had provided for him and that kept me going."

The team has raised £500 so far through sponsorship and cakes sales and you can still sponsor  them.

Ecclesiastical will match-fund this amount, as it does for all staff fundraising. The company also gives a personal grant to all of its employees - a £125 donation to give to a cause close to their hearts - and this is doubled if the staff member chooses to volunteer for the same charity.

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