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Meningitis Trust - Stroud Five Valley Walk

stroud walkAt 8.30 am on Sunday 29 September Mark Frost, Vicki Frost and Jenny Croxall were anticipating their challenge for the day – a 21 mile circular route around the Five Valleys of Stroud to raise money for the Meningitis Trust and Meningitis UK.  Together with Jenny and Vicki’s father and Max the dog they set off at a pace covering the first five miles from Wycliffe School to Nailsworth in just over an hour.  Unfortunately that pace was not to last as from that point on there were a number of steep climbs to contend with!  It was a bit of a battle up an incredibly steep hill onto Minchinhampton Common, and at the top Max was determined to stop at the pub!  The next section was a welcome downhill to Brimscombe where, after a brief respite, they made good time over the next 3 miles to the lunch stop.  Following a pint and some delicious pasties, everyone was very confident that they would easily make the 21 miles.  However, the worst of the hills were still to come.   


They set off after lunch at a slightly slower pace, and in bright sunshine, to tackle the next few sections to Slad and then onto Pitchcombe.  There was only one big climb left, up to Standish Woods.  This was the worst climb of them all as it seemed to go on forever, but with the promise of an ice cream at the top they all made it!  Time was getting a bit tight following the ice cream stop so they picked up the pace a bit again for the final downhill section.  Having stopped a couple of times to make sure they were going the right way, the last 2 miles seemed a lot further, but eventually the end was in sight!  They reached the final checkpoint at 5 pm with half an hour to spare, and were welcomed warmly back at Wycliffe by the Meningitis volunteers.  Everyone was delighted to have completed this mammoth walk and together with the walk on the Malverns which was held in August, Mark, Vicki and Jenny have all achieved the 25 mile Trigon target.  To top it all off they have also raised almost £200 for the charity pot to bring us closer to our £25,000 target.