Peter’s Parkinson’s Pilgrimage

When Peter Charles announced at his 70th birthday party that he had decided to walk more than 1,500 miles for charity his friends and family were astounded. In fact most of them thought he must be drunk or simply mad! But after setting off on Valentine’s Day Peter stepped across the finish line today to prove to everyone that he is a truly determined man.

Following the Medieval Pilgrim Route Peter’s journey started in Little Missenden, Buckinghamshire and took him 260 miles across the south of England to Cornwall. After a ferry to Roscoff, he then walked more than 700 miles down the west side of France to the Pyrenees to Spain. Once there he took the Camino del Norte coastal route, which was another 500 miles to his destination at Santiago de Compostela. This is an incredible 1,509 miles, excluding the ferry!

The whole pilgrimage was undertaken to raise vital funds for research and respite care for people with Parkinson’s Disease, an illness that Peter was diagnosed with seven years ago. He told us “Parkinson’s is a slow, progressive disease and I want to do something whilst I still can to raise money to help people with Parkinson’s. I also want to raise awareness of the condition.”

Before the walk he told us “Walking is good for people with Parkinson’s and it’s a way of encouraging them to walk and at the same time encouraging people to give me this chance to raise money by walking myself.” He added “There are obviously the physical and mental challenges of walking such a long way, mostly on my own, but I am aware of those challenges and expect to deal with them. And I will walk every single yard!” Peter completed half of the race walking on his own and he was lucky enough to have friends and family joining him on the other half of the walk.

We caught up with him again as he finished his mammoth task today. He told us that crossing the mountains in Spain was extremely daunting “I had to walk 26 kilometres in 36 degree heat carrying a 9.5 kilo backpack, so it was not an easy task”. He added “Northern France was difficult too, it was three days of continuous rain”.

Despite the hard days Peter is understandably proud of his efforts and he said, “I never considered giving up”.

Peter has raised £56,000 on his epic journey – to donate to this total click here

To find out more about Parkinson’s UK - click here



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