The long walk

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Last Sunday, I drove to Leeds and back and went in loads of pubs. I didn’t even have a drink in any of them, which is something of a miracle for me, I just drove over hill after hill for 58 miles.

Next Wednesday marks the start of a mammoth walk from Wigan (well Euxton) to Leeds. I can confirm that there are hills in Chorley, hills in Blackburn, hills in Accrington, hills in Burnley, hills in Todmorden, hills in Halifax and yes, probably a few hills on the way into Leeds as well.

Constantly getting out of the car to check footpaths and pedestrianised areas and ensuring canal towpaths are legitimate. I was hoping to walk/run the 9 miles between Todmorden and Sowerby Bridge (pronounce SOOORBY btw) but as time is not my friend right now, I’ve had to rely on Google satellite, so I hope my fellow walkers have brought their trunks (and swimsuits)

To organise this takes a huge effort, but to see £13,000 roll in (and counting) which is already a phenomenal amount of money is unbelievable and makes it all worth it.

However, with reference to the hills and distance. Make no mistake about it, this is going to involve a WORLD OF PAIN for all concerned. Last year, we walked 20 miles on the Friday from Wigan to Blackpool until the glorious oasis of a Travel Inn appeared mirage like, and then, slightly hungover, performed a 12 mile canter up the Fylde Coast to Fleetwood in glorious sunshine. Easy peasy.

This is two days of 22 miles, then a final day of 14 miles over undulating hills, in possibly not the best weather. I’m resisting the urge to constantly check, there appears to be rain but not constantly thankfully – though as ever it can change, and indeed in the most brutal fashion, over the Pennines.

Any suggestion that this could merely be a big p*** up can firmly be dispelled, although the pubs are the Nirvana that keeps us moving, for the chance to sit down not drink alcohol, I hasten to add.

We’re doing this for Joseph, a smashing little boy, and Wigan Athletic’s most famous mascot, and the hope that we can accelerate his treatment. We’re certainly not walking to Leeds and paying £39 to watch us (probably) continue our dismal away form in front of a sell out promotion-chasing home crowd at Elland Road. Though we do happen to have a 100% record at away games we’ve walked to, no pressure lads.

So, I’m going to curtail this here, instead of waffling on for once, and having just thanked everyone who has donated to me already to get me over £500, I’d love to get up to personally £1,000.

So, yes at this stage, I’m going to unashamedly ask you for money, now you’ve read what we are doing, and why we are doing it and thank those of you who have donated and are perhaps willing to after reading this from the bottom of my heart

And with that, here is the link: https://mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/martintarbuck2

PS can I clarify, I’m not that much of a shortarse, it’s just the four fine fellas next to me are all quite tall. Thanks.





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