03 January 2011

Gifts for Heather

I wasn't planning on a post for today but I will post this message from Richard Steddall about an event he is planning later this year which deserves support...

Dear All,
I can’t believe 2010 is over already ! Where did it go ?
2011 will be another busy year… In mid-July I start my Charity Trip from Land's End to John O' Groats (and back !) by bus - all in 2 weeks (well two weeks and a day if you include the time it takes to get from Okehampton to Land's End and back at the start and end of the trip !).
The Trip will start on Friday 15th July, and now that Christmas is out of the way, serious planning needs to start. Whilst I realise that it will be impractical for many of you to join me for the full two weeks (you are welcome though !), or at all, for those of you based outside of the UK, I hope that many of you who are here in the UK will be able to join me for sections along the way. Shaun Flynn has kindly built me a website for The Trip, and you will be able to find out more about what I am planning to do HERE
All sorts of additional pages will go live nearer the time (such as a message board, an interactive map (hopefully !) and most importantly details on how to donate money !), so why not sign up to either the Twitter or Facebook pages for the event, which will keep you up to date with developments, and let you know when major upgrades to the website take place.
To follow events on Twitter CLICK HERE
To follow events on Facebook CLICK HERE:
Whilst it is a bit early I realise for people to commit to coming along, I would love to hear from you if you are interested in doing some (or all !) of the Trip (even if it is just for part of one day).
The current plan is as follows, but this may need to change once the Summer timetables are known.

  • Friday 15th July – Okehampton to Penzance - via Tavistock, Callington, Liskeard, Bodmin, Truro, and a circuit out via Land’s End (hopefully weather permitting the Land’s End circuit to and from Penzance will be by open top bus).
  • Saturday 16th July – Penzance to Weston-super-Mare – via Truro, Okehampton, Exeter and Taunton
  • Sunday 17th July – Weston-super-Mare to Wolverhampton – via Bristol, Bath, Swindon, Oxford, Stratford-upon-Avon, and Birmingham
  • Monday 18th July – Wolverhamton to Preston – via Stafford, Newcastle-under-Lyme, Crewe and Liverpool
  • Tuesday 19th July – Preston to Glasgow – via Lancaster, Keswick and Dumfries
  • Wednesday 20th July – Glasgow to Castlebay (Barra) – via Oban and the Cal-Mac ferry
  • Thursday 21st July – Castlebay to Stornoway – playing “hopscotch” up the Western Isles chain using the connecting buses and Cal-Mac ferries
  • Friday 22nd July – Stornoway to Durness – via the Cal-Mac ferry to Ullapool
  • Saturday 23rd July – Durness to Elgin – via the remote north coast of Scotland, Thurso, John O’ Groats, Wick and Inverness
  • Sunday 24th July – Elgin to Edinburgh – via Aberdeen, Dundee and Glenrothes
  • Monday 25th July – Edinburgh to York – via Galashiels, Berwick-upon-Tweed, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Middlesburgh and Whitby
  • Tuesday 26th July – York to Northampton – via Selby, Sheffield, Chesterfield, Derby and Leicester
  • Wednesday 27th July – Northampton to Rochester – via Bedford, Hitchin, Stevenage, Hertford, Waltham Cross, Loughton, Romford, Lakeside and Bluewater
  • Thursday 28th July – Rochester to Salisbury – via Maidstone, Tunbridge Wells, Brighton, Portsmouth and Southampton
  • Friday 29th July – Salisbury to Penzance – via Weymouth, Exeter, Plymouth, Liskeard, Bodmin and Truro
  • Saturday 30th July – Penzance to Okehampton – via Land’s End, St. Ives, Newquay and Bude

If anyone is particularly interested in coming along for the Scottish highlands and islands section (the scenery is truly stunning and not to be missed !) please let me know ASAP as this will need a lot of careful planning due to the small vehicles used on some routes, and the small number of hotels and B&Bs to choose from. There is also a lot of logistical planning to do between now and the 15th July – not least help in publicising the trip. Even if you can only come along for a short section of the trip (or maybe can’t come at all), you can still help with planning, publicity and ideas for other fundraising events that can all help contribute to the overall total. I would especially love to hear from you if you know anyone who works in the media - be it national or local - TV, radio or print. In the case of local media it would help if the area they cover is along the line of route !
You e-mail me at the new special e-mail address - richard@giftsforheather.com
My initial goal is to raise £2129 for Oxfam to help build a new classroom in a school in a developing nation, and also stock a new school library - both areas that were very close to Heather's heart when she was still with us. I am hoping that actually we can raise far more - my plan is that this is not just going to be "my" trip - that this will be a team fund-raising event - the more people we can get involved the more money we can raise :-) So please please please do get in touch to discuss your ideas in how you can help !
Details on how to actually donate money will follow nearer the time. There will be a "justgiving" website (or similar) as well as more traditional ways to donate (and for your friends and family to donate too !)

For more details of Oxfam’s “unwrapped gifts” please CLICK HERE
I see The Trip as publicising three important topics :
(1) the good work that Oxfam does ;
(2) just what is possible using bus services in the UK (every time I tell someone about The Trip they reply that they did not think it was possible to do - let alone in 2 weeks !) ;
(3) keeping the memory of Heather alive - as it says on the webpage - "Cherish Her Memory and Let It Live On"
We need to get as many people interested in The Trip as possible, so SPREAD THE WORD. The more money we raise, the more good work that Oxfam can do.
All the best (and hope to hear from you soon !)

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