A Hampshire man has set himself the challenge of walking 2,022 miles this year in aid of The Fire Fighters Charity – a cause that’s particularly close to his and his family’s hearts.
Colin Charlton, 52, from Hartley Wintney, wanted to give something back to the charity, as it’s there for not only his dad – who’s a retired on-call firefighter – but also his two cousins and uncle, all of whom are firefighters, for life.
The Fire Fighters Charity provides support for thousands of fire and rescue service personnel and their families every year. And that support lasts a lifetime.
All four members of Colin’s family have been based at Hartley Wintney Fire Station throughout their individual on-call careers, each of which have spanned over 25 years. While Colin isn’t a firefighter himself, he’s seen how much time his relatives have dedicated to fundraising for the Charity, as well as the support some of them have received – so wanted to do his bit.
However, his main motivation to complete the epic walk this year is honouring his father, Dave Charlton, whose health is sadly deteriorating as he’s living with Parkinson’s disease.
“I enjoy walking and setting myself a challenge. Last year, I set out to do 1,000 miles and I did 1,500, so I thought I’d up it this year and do it to raise some money for a charity that means something to me.
“The Fire Fighters Charity is always there… I spoke to them at the end of last year and I was so impressed. They offered a lot of advice on ways we could access support for my dad. That support is there, no matter when you retire, for your lifetime.
“Plus, for me, that link to the station has always been there, it’s a part of our family as well as our community.”
Colin will complete several Ultra Challenge events throughout the year, to reach his target, and the next one will see him walk 27 miles in a day around his local fire stations on 18 June – from Hartley Wintney, then to Yateley, then to Fleet, on to Odiham and ending back at Hartley Wintney.
If you’d like to support his fundraiser, please visit his JustGiving page.