The plan is to walk around the whole of the British coastline. That is 6100 miles according to my planned route, and will I reckon take approximately 48 weeks. As the reaction from one friend I told about this was ‘that should be fun, and lucky Britain is a small island’, for scale as a crow flies the distance from London to Tokyo is 5950 miles!
I will aim to walk an average of 120/125 miles a week, walking 6 days each week and having one rest day. The rest day being both to recuperate my body, allow me to keep my blog up to date and enable planning for the subsequent week.
I will be carrying camping equipment with me and the majority of the time I will be staying under canvas, whether this be on a campsite, with permission on private land or wild camping. Other accommodation options that I will use are listed below:
- Walking hostels
- Bothies in Scotland
- Kind offers from friends and strangers*
*If you or someone you know is able to offer support either with a meal, bed, camping pitch along any of the route I would be extremely grateful. Please get in touch here.
Reason for walking...
Unfortunately since December 2013 my life has been significantly changed with the onset of my mental health issues. I went from being a relatively happy/positive person, in a job I liked (Bridge Structural Engineer), in a house I liked and with enough friends. To being an unhappy/negative person, having to quit my job, being essentially homeless at points and feeling completely isolated from the world, seemingly with no trigger and for no reason. It has driven me to the very edge and occasionally almost beyond.
This year (2017) I have been outwardly in a slightly better place, in steady accommodation, not having many manic moments, managing to get out and see friends, but unfortunately I am still too scared to try and get certain aspects back to normal and still feel very lonely/isolated amongst other things, and thus still have a way to go.
I have set myself this challenge for two reasons. Firstly a selfish one, being active is one of the few things that definitely does help my mental health (even if at times it’s hard to get out) so setting myself this challenge will definitely make me get out and about, be active and thus hopefully improve my physical wellbeing as well as my mental health. Secondly unfortunately I have had very bad experiences with the NHS mental health services, which have actually made my mental health worse. The Mental Health Foundation work in many areas including trying to influence policy and it is only with organisations like this that the changes required to the treatment of people with mental health can improve, so I am really excited to support them with any fundraising money raised.
I am extremely grateful for any donations, or help with this challenge. It will all help towards my fundraising target, help keep me motivated during my walk and more importantly help an organisation that does a lot of good.
I am really looking forward to the walk, and look forward to keeping this site updated as I go!