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St Christopher’s Hospice needs sponsored walkers

PUBLISHED: 07:00 11 March 2019 | UPDATED: 11:03 11 March 2019

Sam and her group last year. Photo:  Sam  Packham

Sam and her group last year. Photo: Sam Packham

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A hospice is calling on residents to take part in its biggest fundraiser of the year – the annual sponsored walk.

Sam Packham has done the walk six times in memory of her dad who was cared for at the hospice.Sam Packham has done the walk six times in memory of her dad who was cared for at the hospice.

The St Christopher’s Fun Walk is on May 19 and needs walkers to sign up.

By doing so, the money they raise will help to keep essential services running and freely available for local families when they need it most.

The organisers say the route through Keston takes in stunning countryside and is in itself a life-enhancing day out with an infectiously positive communal experience.

They said many people enjoy taking part year after year, and come in fancy dress or customised T-shirts remembering someone special.

Sam Peckham, 48, from Bromley, has done it before, and said: “The Fun Walk is just wonderful.

“We walked the 11 mile route last time and when we needed to cross any roads, passing drivers tooted their horns to encourage us and support us along, and it felt like a great thing to be doing for such an important cause. We know first-hand what a difference the hospice makes to families.”

She revealed her father Geoffrey Rye died at the hospice in 2005 aged 67, after a two-week stay.

She said: “I remember sitting with my dad one day on the ward, holding his hand.

“One of the nurses came in and rearranged his pillows and made him more comfortable in the bed, and then on the way out, seeing that I was upset, she just gave me a comforting rub on my shoulder. It was a small thing, but made me feel I wasn’t on my own.”

Sam and her friends and family have now walked the Fun Walk six times, and raised hundreds of pounds for the hospice.

It starts and finishes at Keston Common after meandering through some of Kent’s prettiest countryside with route options for three, five, eight and 11 miles.

Remi Knight, fundraiser at St Christopher’s, added: “Many supporters come in amazing fancy dress but it’s not compulsory. Don’t forget, dogs are really welcome too.”

For more information or to sign-up, visit www.stchristophers.org.uk/funwalk

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