The walk4andy has of course been a labour of love but I could never have achieved it on my own. This is my opportunity to thank all those who have supported me (I just have to hope it doesn’t sound too much like an Oscars acceptance speech!) and it goes without saying that I wouldn’t have got very far at all if it hadn’t been for the man who built the Wall in the first place …
Thanks to all those who have joined me on my walk: Julie, Ian, Nathan, Erica, Scott, Tamara (and Charlie the greyhound!), Tony, Sue, James, Benjy, Hilary, David, Jonathan, Benjamin, Wendy and Val
Thanks to those who have helped with lifts and being around during the week: Allison, Will and Dan, Yvonne, Chris, Catherine and Anna, Mags, Matthew, Daniel and Lucy, and especially Barry (and Zac!)
Thanks to those who have given us hospitality, especially Michael and the folk at Carlisle Cathedral, and Benjamin and Stephanie, Elizabeth and Matilda.
Thanks to those I’ve met along the way – Michael, Dany, Clare and countless others whose names I never found out.
Thanks to Andy at the ATC who lent me his camel pack so I didn’t have to stop to drink.
Thanks to my Diabetes team at Leicester General who gave me my continuous glucose monitoring kit making it so much easier to avoid the hypos.
Thanks to Geraldine’s chiropodist who provided a kit for my feet which amazingly I haven’t had to use at all!
Thanks to those who have been praying for me, especially everyone back at St Denys who have been walking and praying in solidarity. I have felt held in a way like never before.
Thanks to those who have been reading my blog and sending comments and words of encouragement. It has meant a great deal to me.
Thanks to those who have supported by sponsoring me. That is the most important part of this whole journey and I am gobsmacked to have raised nearly three times my target of £1000. Thank you thank you.
And thanks to my family for putting up with me, not only through this week but through all the planning and practice walks, for agreeing to holiday in Carlisle and Derbyshire last year so that I could do some walking. Thank you for your endless patience and your support this week. To Erica and Hilary for your companionship on so much of the walk, and to Wendy for encouraging me and humbly getting on with the most boring job of bag-carrying, fetching and dropping off. I know you had lots of tea and cake in pretty places to make up for it, but it did mean you had to get up when we did!
And finally, thanks to Andy, without whom I would not be the person I am today and would never have found the inspiration and determination to do something like this. I laughed out loud when I read a comment from someone who knew Andy very well saying ‘I can’t help thinking Andy would want to know why you’re walking that far when you could drive!’ So true! But I hope that this will go some distance to helping others with his condition to get more support and maybe help those who are working to find a cure for VHL. Huge thanks to VHL UK/Ireland for all the work you do for families like ours.