On Saturday the 27th Of July I joined the escalla team and braced the rain, brambles, nettles and 1,000 metres of climbing to complete a 26.2 mile marathon walk in aid of the UK Sepsis Trust.
Premier IT were proud to be one of the headline sponsors of the event so it was only right that we laced up our boots and joined in too. The walk took in the wilderness of Surrey, following the winding trails of the Greensands Way and ending up at the top of Leith Hill, the second-highest point in the South East of England.
At 9am we started gathering at Witley train station, adorned in our trusty wet weather gear prepared for a day of being exposed to the elements. One of the team had brought a feast of breakfast butties that we eagerly tucked in to not knowing when we would be hitting our first pit stop for lunch. We asked the local postman to take a photo of the team at the starting line to which he obliged and we repaid him with our last breakfast butty to help power him through his rounds.
The waiting was over and we were finally on our way. In the rain friends chatted, new acqaintances were getting to know each other and we walked.
With our hiking boots beginning to feel a little tighter, we joined the Greensands Way, a 108 mile long path that takes in 2 Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Even though it was raining it was starting to get warmer and under the cover of trees it started to feel a bit like we were trekking through a rainforest. After what felt like hours of climbing we reached our first view point and took advantage of another photo opportunity.
Just before we hit our halfway point and pit stop for lunch we heard lots of frantic chirping. Some eagle eyed members of the team spotted some tiny ducklings that had somehow fallen down a cattlegrid and had become stuck. The mother was quacking away trying to figure out how she was going to get them out. Team Walk for Sepsis assembled and came to their rescue. With a bit more chirping and quacking all 3 ducklings were saved and returned to their family, waddling off into their happy ever after.
This really lifted our spirits and helped us plod on the last few miles before our pit stop and the best fish and chips I’ve tasted in my entire life (this may have been because I was so hungry). After lunch we hugged and waved goodbye to some of the team who were stopping at the half way point and welcomed our new team member who was joining us for the second half.
Sitting down for the first time after over 14 miles of marching had meant cokes, beers and burgers were absorbed like oxygen. In some ways, the biggest challenge of the day was getting up again. But the calories and fresh pairs of socks were just enough to silence the temptation of the nearest train station.
The second half of the walk was, for many, gruelling. Blisters and aching limbs were trying to slow us down, but the team kept pushing on towards the final hurdle – Leith Hill. It measures 294 metres above sea level and is the second highest point in the South East of England. This fact, we had kept a little secret until we reached the summit. Another photo opportunity of our happy faces, knowing that we were over the worst.
At 8.30pm, we made it to the finish line and many of the team were greated by hugs from family and friends, we had done it! After lots of burgers, drinks and ice cream it was, at last, time to begin the long, sore, but incredibly satisfying trips back home.
This charity walk was in support of The UK Sepsis Trust – an amazing charity working to save lives and improve outcomes for sepsis sufferers.
Everyone who joined or donated to Walk for Sepsis 2019 helped to be part of their work to promote awareness, drive political change and support the people affected by the condition.
We walked because:
44,000 PEOPLE in the UK lose their lives to sepsis every year. EVERY 3.5 SECONDS someone in the world dies from sepsis. It’s the BIGGEST direct cause of death in UK pregnancies.
Thank you so much to everyone involved in organising and supporting this event.
You can donate to the team page here: Donate