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Gloucestershire Business News

Conquer The Cotswold Way Challenge for Sue Ryder

Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice is calling on people across Gloucestershire to sign up to the Cotswold Way Challenge and raise vital funds to support its specialist palliative care and bereavement support.

Taking place on 25th - 26th June, the 100-kilometre route will loop through the heart of the Cotswolds, providing stunning views of rolling hills and picturesque villages for 2,000 adventurers.

The Cheltenham hospice is encouraging members of the public to take part and help raise funds so it can continue to provide expert and compassionate care, advice and support to local people living with life-limiting conditions, as well as supporting their families.

Whether you're a casual walker and new to challenge events, an experienced trekker, or a marathon enthusiast, there is a distance suitable for everyone. Individuals can opt to challenge themselves to one of three routes across the two days: the full 100-kilometres, 50-kilometres, or 25-kilometres.

For those who want to take part in the full and continuous 100-kilometre route, participants will set out from Cirencester on the Saturday morning and head north into the rolling green hills of the Cotswolds. There is a 2,250M ascent which, whilst testing your legs, will reward you with some of the UK's most breath-taking views for miles around. Every 12 -13 kilometres, there are refreshments stops, with a main halfway stop in Wotton, before heading south back towards Cirencester.

It's a great opportunity to try something new and raise money for a very worthy cause. Sign up via ultrachallenge.com/cotswold-way-challenge.

Individuals challenging themselves to take part in this ultra-event will get full support and hospitality, including optional accommodation at the base camp in Cirencester, depending on where you are travelling from and which version of the challenge you choose.

Previous participants and sisters from Cheltenham, Abi Donald and Georgie Cooper took part last year in memory of their mum and aunt. Their mum, Alison Duncan, was cared for at Leckhampton Court Hospice in 2018, and their aunt, Eve Bentham, was cared for at Sue Ryder's Duchess of Kent Hospice in Reading in 2020.

When reflecting on the challenge, Abi said: "It was a wonderful opportunity to share with my sister and for us to have so much time together to talk about our mum and our aunt.

"One thing I hadn't expected was how enjoyable and fun it would be meeting the other people on the walk, all people doing great things for different reasons and different causes. People who raise money through challenges like this are by and large going to be very lovely and a bit mad!

"We are just very happy to have raised money for Sue Ryder who helped our family so much. The whole team at Sue Ryder supported us throughout the experience with messages of support and thanks. It's been like having our own fan club!

"Sue Ryder is the most amazing charity which has supported our family with kindness through the toughest of times. Their care allowed our mum and aunt to be surrounded by family at home and in an environment that was safe, comfortable, dignified and full of love."

Matt Reay, community fundraising manager at Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice, said, "We are so grateful to people like Abi and Georgie who lend their time and effort to raise money for Sue Ryder. It really does make a huge difference and we cannot thank our supporters enough - regardless of how much they raise.

"We really hope lots of people are keen to challenge themselves and sign up to the Cotswold Way Challenge. It is a fantastic event and the money raised really does make a huge difference. All funds raised by participants this year will help us continue to provide the expert care we are so well-known for in the local community, and fill the last days with love."

For those wishing to get stuck in, registration is now open online at ultrachallenge.com/cotswold-way-challenge 

For more information on Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice, visit sueryder.org/leckhampton

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