Skip to main content

Hi I’m Joshua Dodd, Marketing Officer at Pocket Projects and here’s my story of how me and my friends (Jeremy Sutcliffe, Curtis Benton, Jake Needham, Nathaniel Cross and Harry Law) raised money and awareness for Cancer Research UK by walking 90 miles across Hadrian’s wall. 

A lot of credit has to go towards one friend in particular, which is Harry Law, who was the one who spent a lot of his time developing and making the plans for all this to be possible: from booking all locations from place to place to working out our estimated travelling each day. We owe a lot of thanks towards him although a simple “nice one lad” did the job! As soon as he mentioned it to us, we were all so involved and up for doing it. We all joined together to do the walk to raise awareness of the horrible illness of cancer, which has affected a lot of our close family members, and gave us a real motivation to pick the charity Cancer Research UK which our friends and family have been hugely supportive of our choosing.  

We set off at 6:00am, which to some of us was a big a shock to the system it seems as we had two that found their beds extra comfortable that morning. Nether the less we were off and full of life, suited and booted in our roman outfits and ready to take on Hadrian’s Wall. With the music blasting to keep us half alive and the taxi driver probably fed up of us, we were on our way to our first destination. Which saw us arrive at Bowness on Solway at 9:00am with a lovely warm welcome from the locals, who twisted our arm to stay for a pint, that didn’t take too much convincing, but refuelled and refreshed we were ready to start our 90 Mile walk.  

Day One

Our first day saw us go from Bowness on Solway to Carlisle which was a walk of 14.92 miles in total, and in a moving time of 4 Hours and 29 Minutes we’d made it to Carlisle. Also racking up our fastest ever mile time seeing us do a mile in 12 minutes! After completing our first day of walking we were very optimistic of what was to come and thought that this would be the case for every day, oh how we were wrong. 

After arriving into Carlisle one of our members took his shoe off and to his horror had discovered two massive blisters on his heels and to quote him as I heard him bellow out through the hotel “they are the size of golf balls!”. But luckily for the team this did not affect his drinking performance in the evening! 

Day Two 

Day Two arrived quicker than expected as we all slept like angels but despite sore feet and for some reason our heads also, we were ready to set off on our second journey. We were itching to set off in good time to watch England in their first game of the Euro’s, as we were seeking revenge against Croatia! Determined to find somewhere to watch the match we were cutting it fine as we were 10 miles into our walk and there was nothing in sight. Then it seems almost too good to be true as we were walking, we came across a country road and there was a sign on along the road, which looking back looked like it had a beam of light shining down onto it advertising a pub a mile away from us. So the mission was on, we had our bags on, our England tops on, it was now or never with half an hour to go to make it to the pub! We eventually got there, celebrated the win, had our food and then slowly realized we had another 10 miles to walk…more than worth it for the England victory though.  

 

Day Three – Five  

This saw us unfortunately lose a member of the team, the golf ball heels sadly got the better of him and he left in high spirits which gave us much encouragement to carry on through the walk! We carried on going through the gears and the mileage and from day 3 – 5 saw us clock up 31 Miles in total setting us up nicely for our final day of walking! Although it wasn’t easy to get to this point as we had 4 miles of walking up and down hills on the end of the 4th day and the start of our 5th day. Once we did these hills, we thought it couldn’t get any harder from this point onwards but we came up against what felt like the world’s longest fields that dragged on for over 6 miles and all of us started running low on our water but we finally got to the end of them where we managed to find a B&B where they kindly let us fill our waters up from the outside.  

 

Day Six  

After already walking 78 miles, 2 friends down to injury, a lot of blisters, aches and moans it came down to one last day of walking for us, and this time, we set off early. We all woke up at 7:30 got our showers, put our tents away and set off walking with our last 11 miles left to go. 

  

 

Top 5 Benefits of Hiking

1. The Views 

This is a personal preference of mine but when hiking or doing extra long walks for me the scenery and the views can be so beautiful it’s what got us through doing some of our toughest hills! But there are some great footpath’s you can go through to find some great spots. There’s multiple places you can go for a nice hike and for some great views such as the lake district where you can camp there and wake up early to the sunrise on top of the mountains.

2. It keeps you fit and healthy

We all know that exercise is good for you but some people struggle with motivations to exercise but this is a great activity to help you get past them barriers! It’s great for getting out and seeing places you may not have seen before and getting in your steps for the day. It’s also been known for helping your immune system as studies by Japanese scientists showed that after walking outside in a natural environment, participant’s white blood cells increased by 40 percent. It shows after doing hiking that the human body is more than well equipped at fighting off infections.

3. Helps With Creativity 

It’s known for people to go on walks to “clear their heads” and with this becomes a truth it really does help but have you thought about doing it after a creative block?

When you are faced with a challenge, it can sometimes be difficult to figure a solution. With relating this back to myself going outside for a walk can be refreshing to help remove yourself from distractions and to-do lists, allowing your mind to relax, refresh, and gain new perspective which you may have not realised before.

4. It helps the environment

Keeping cars off the road is always a good thing in reducing noise pollution and carbon dioxide emissions.  There are a plenty of public footpaths and bridal ways to navigate in the countryside lanes and the online site National Trail helps you find the perfect rout.  Many businesses encourage  staff to cycle to work however why not challenge yourself and ditch the bike as well as the car on your journey to work.

5. Its fun and social

Hiking is a very sociable activity, whether you join a club or spend time with your family or friends. Personally for me I went with my close mates and it made time fly a lot quicker than if I was to do it by myself. So I encourage you to do it with people so you can enjoy the experience with other people!

Josh Dodd

Author Josh Dodd

More posts by Josh Dodd

Join the discussion 2 Comments

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.