Fundraiser Dan Alborough got in touch to tell us about his brilliant Norfolk Coast Walk in memory of his good friend, Lucy, who died of pancreatic cancer in March 2011...
"My friend Lucy passed away in March, after so positively and bravely battling pancreatic cancer, my thoughts kept turning to doing something that would be a tribute to her. I wanted to do something challenging, raise money, raise awareness, something that I could always remember and that Lucy would have been proud of too. A sponsored walk came to mind and I had genuinely had thoughts before of walking Peddars Way and the Norfolk Coast Path as an undertaking that was close to home, so it was a good choice for charity. I was prepared to walk alone, but also took the view that anyone wanting to join me was more than welcome. And it wasn't long before that happened. I was talking about my plan with my good friend Helen and she straight away expressed an interest in coming along...and so the planning began.
As the weeks went by [the August bank holiday week was voted to be the best for both of us and I began to figure out an itinerary of destinations and distances for each day. Once the accommodation was booked, it was a case of continuing the training, deciding what to take (as we would be carrying it everywhere) and beginning that all important fundraising - I really made a nuisance of myself on places like Facebook!
The walk itself was challenging, exhilarating, enjoyable and an experience neither myself nor Helen will ever forget. We had so much support from family and friends and Lucy's family were a huge help in drumming up sponsorship and boosted the total massively! The walk was picturesque, with terrain that covered beaches and dunes, salt marshes, shingle, fields and pathways, everything you can imagine on such a route. Family and friends and supporters were there to greet us at the finish line, at Cromer pier, where we ran through a purple ribbon! It was an emotional finish and we felt so proud, and I feel that we did Lucy proud too...I certainly thought about her a lot during that week. I'd recommend doing a sponsored walk to others without hesitation, as it's something that most people of an average fitness level can manage. However, one piece of advice would be to spread the mileage more evenly! Going from a ten mile day, to eighteen miles the next day was a tough one and did test us! But we still did it, with great determination and positivity, positivity that I know I feel I have always possessed and that Lucy had in spades too, and her memory has increased it even further. It really was 'My Life Changing Walk For Lucy'...."