The Western Morning News raised just under £160,000 for charity with what it claims is the biggest ever sponsored walk in the region.
RNLI, Macmillan Cancer Support and rugby charity Wooden Spoon benefited from the Great South West Walk which had 12,000 participants covering 630 miles of coastline throughout August. The distance was divided into 31 legs, one for each day of the month and followed the entire South West Coastal Path.
Western Morning News editor Alan Qualtrough said:: ‘We wanted something that could unite our entire circulation area and the South West Coastal Path is something that we all appreciate and benefit from.”
The newspaper was fundamental in promoting the campaign and reported on the ups and downs of determined walkers, helping to boost morale and encourage businesses to take part.
Qualtrough also said he was ‘amazed at the lengths people went to and the diversity of the entrants. We had a group of Royal Marines being sponsored to run one leg and a family who had been rescued at sea by the RNLI and wanted to show their appreciation. It has been a huge success for all involved, engaging the community and raising so much money for these three charities”.
In addition to money raised from sponsorship, the event had substantial backing from corporate sponsors including: two golf days, daily auctions and private donations. The paper rounded off the month-long event with a gala dinner auction that managed to raise a further £3500.