870-mile Walk on Wales for veterans comes to an end

870-mile Walk on Wales for veterans comes to an end

Ex-soldiers on the start of a 870 mile Walk on Wales trek, which will raise a à £1million for a centre to help war veterans pictured at Newport Transporter Bridge. (947132)

A £1 MILLION fundraising walk around the Welsh coastline which took in Newport came to a conclusion at the weekend.

The Porthcawl to Cardiff Bay leg of the 870 mile Walk on Wales, in aid of Welsh soldiers, was completed on Saturday.

It had started in August, as the coastline was split into 11 stages and a total of 2,500 people tackled it in relays.

Back then, Paul Conlon, from High Cross, led a group of ex-servicemen on the route, as they called for a Welsh centre providing specialist help for traumatised servicemen and women.

Mr Conlon was diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder after serving for 11 years in the Army including the Falklands.

He had to travel to a specialist centre in Shropshire to be told.

At the time, he said: “I have friends that have committed suicide, and have turned to alcohol and pills. I look at myself and I’m glad that I’ve sorted myself out. This is my way of giving something back.”

Walk on Wales is a charity set up by two Falklands veterans, Captain Jan Koops and LSgt Dai Graham.

Its website says £293,547 has been collected so far from participants.

On Saturday, participants, carrying a silver baton inscribed with the names of 50 Welsh Guardsmen who died since the end of the World War II, ended the fundraiser at the Senedd.

Four members of the team, including Mr Koops, have walked every single mile of the route.

“It’s been truly an amazing journey for us all,” he said.

“The support we’ve had from all of the communities we’ve passed through along the way has been incredible. People have given us food and drinks to keep us going and we’ve been so grateful for that.”

The walkers were welcomed back by the Treorchy Male Voice choir, a band of the Welsh Guards, Sally Thorneloe and her family.

She is the widow of Lieutenant Colonel Rupert Thorneloe, the highest-ranking British officer killed on active service for more than a quarter of a century.

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Article source: http://www.southwalesargus.co.uk/news/gwentnews/10782898.870_mile_Walk_on_Wales_for_veterans_comes_to_an_end/