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Group walked 108 miles backwards to raise money

Published on 3 Jan 2023

Six men from Llandudno braved below freezing temperatures to walk from Llandudno to Chester and back again to raise money for three charities including ours.

The 108-mile challenge would be difficult enough for many but owner of Landudno's Tynedale Hotel, Nathan, his son-in-law Sam and four of their friends and colleagues, who call themselves the Llandudno Vikings, made the journey backwards and blindfolded!

The group, aged between 18 and 54, set off from the Llandudno War Memorial on 16 December.

They have chosen to split the money they raise equally between our charity, Macmillan Cancer Support and the Welsh Air Ambulance Charitable Trust.

Supporter walking backwards dressed as a Viking and being supported by two forward facing walkers holding each arm
Llandudno Viking Nathan approaching the finish line
Backward walking fundraisers dressed as Vikings at the start line of their challenge with supporters in the background including blind veterans
Llandudno Vikings ready to set off supported by a group including some blind veterans
Group dressed as Vikings standing with collection buckets in front of the Llandudno War Memorial at the end of the challenge
Llandudno Vikings at the finish line

Llandudno Viking Nathan said:

“The majority of the challenge was completed blindfolded but we were forced to remove our blindfolds for the coastal path section as the conditions were too treacherous.

“Blisters, strains, nausea, soft tissue damage and exhaustion meant that very, very reluctantly, my team were forced to retire from the fundraiser having reached Chester.

“I set off for the return journey, with the other five guys joining the support team, just before 11am and I arrived back at the Llandudno Cenotaph at 11.30am on December 18 to a fantastic welcome.

“It was such a tough challenge physically but more so mentally in below freezing conditions.

“I take my hat off to the team of young “Vikings” aged 19 to 30, they all learnt so much about themselves on this journey and went through a rollercoaster of emotions. This challenge has made them stronger, wiser, and more determined to beat me next time and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

“Two days after this challenge they were back at it hiking up the Great Orme in Llandudno with rowing machines strapped to their backs. I gave that one a miss!

“We then all joined together to take part in the Llandudno Boxing Day dip and any money raised from that was also added to our fundraising total which is being split equally between Blind Veterans UK, Macmillan Cancer Support and the Welsh Air Ambulance Charitable Trust."

Our challenge was inspired by The Goons song ‘Walking backwards to Christmas’ and the blindfolded element was inspired by the challenges endured by blind veterans every single day and we want to pay homage to that.
Sam. Llandudno Viking

Llandudno Viking Sam said:

“We all live in or around Llandudno where Blind Veterans UK has one of its centres of wellbeing, so the charity is close to our hearts.

“We’d like to thank the fantastic team of forward walking volunteers who acted as our guides, we couldn’t have done this without them. Also thank you to those who have donated and to those who came out to cheer us along.”

Show your support for the Llandudno Vikings and help them to boost their fundraising total.

Go to their fundraising page

Do you want to take on your own challenge to raise money for our charity?

Get some ideas here

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