Thursday, 23 September 2021

Henley man completes 267 mile charity trek

A MAN with arthritis in his knees walked 267 miles in 12 days for charity.

A MAN with arthritis in his knees walked 267 miles in 12 days for charity.

Ian Jackson raised £2,000 after completing the Pennine Way from Edale in the Peak District to Kirk Yetholm on the Scottish border.

The 57-year-old Henley bricklayer was supporting the Alzheimer’s Society and Cardiac Risk in the Young.

Mr Jackson, who lives at Swiss Farm with his wife Sue, tackled the challenge on his own, walking different length stages of up to 27 miles.

There were few flat sections and he had to climb 2,930ft Cross Fell, near Penrith, which is the highest point in the Pennines.

He stayed overnight at youth hostels or bed and breakfasts. Mr Jackson said: “It was hard going. The shortest leg was about 16 miles but it averaged out at more than 20 miles a day.

“The bogs along the way made it particularly difficult. I knew about them but didn’t realise they’d be more or less everywhere.

“It was very sticky underfoot and if you got your feet wet you’d have to put up with it for the rest of the day.

“However, the scenery was lovely and I met some great people, although I didn’t stick with anyone for long as most of them were trekking at a slower pace.”

Despite carrying an 18kg rucksack filled with his clothes, spare boots, food and water, Mr Jackson said he was not troubled by the arthritis in his knees.

He took a supply of painkillers with him in case.

He said the hardest part was the final day, when he walked 27 miles from Byrness to Kirk Yetholm in 12 hours after getting up at 4am.

He said: “Between the pain in my knee and the blisters on my feet it was hard but I just gritted my teeth and got on with it.

“I was utterly exhausted by the time I had finished. Some friends had come down from Stirling to greet me so I had a quick drink and dinner with them but then I crashed straight into bed before getting a train home the next morning.

“I felt relieved that it was over because by then I’d had enough.

“I actually spent the next four days in bed feeling really rough but I’m fully recovered and back at work now.”

In 2009, Mr Jackson’s 30-year-old stepson Tom Morgan died from sudden heart failure. Last year his 91-year-old father Arthur, from Sonning Common, died after suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

This was his third challenge for CRY after he walked the 192-mile coast to coast route across northern England in 2009 and climbed Scafell Pike, Ben Nevis and Snowdon, the three highest mountains in England, Scotland and Wales, in 2013.

Swiss Farm paid his accommodation costs and train fare in both directions.

To support Mr Jackson, visit

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