Alpha Living pensioners walk the miles to raise £5,000 for dementia charity

A team of pensioners from sheltered housing run by Alpha Living has raised more than £5,000 for charity after taking part in an 18-mile walk.

The group of 50 neighbours, families and friends trekked across Wirral in Merseyside during the gruelling 10-hour Challenge Walk in aid of Dementia UK.

As part of the inaugural event, participants, ranging in ages from three to 73, walked from Bromborough to Upton.

They stopped off at 11 sheltered accommodation developments run by housing association Alpha Living, where some of the fundraisers live.

They were also joined by a team of supporters from the Village Road Runners in Bromborough who ran the course and cheered on the walkers.

Phyllis Swarbrick, aged 67, completed a three mile section of the walk for her husband Mike, aged 60, who suffers from vascular dementia.

“The walk was amazing, everyone was so friendly and the community spirit was really strong with everyone helping and encouraging each other,” she said.

“Despite having a heart problem myself I managed to complete a three mile section of the walk and felt really well.

“I was so pleased to be able to support my husband Mike and others like him suffering from dementia. I was overwhelmed by the generosity of friends, family and local people who have helped me raise over £500 to help Dementia UK.”

Swarbrick’s husband Mike waved her off with flags and was there to cheer her home along with other residents from Alpha’s sheltered housing.

Elsewhere, Bedford Court resident Robbie Williams, aged 65 raised more than £200, while Laurence Deacon Court site manager Sue Jones raised more than £700 for Dementia UK in memory of her mum, who died from the disease.

Another Alpha Living staff member – Karen Tooze – raised £550, while 67-year-old resident Andrew Hughes walked for four miles, raising £115.

He was a member of the Ramblers’ Association for 20 years and still walks for exercise most days.

“I’d like to thank everyone that donated and took part in the event,” said Graeme Foster, Alpha Living’s chief executive. “To have 50 walkers and runners giving up their time and raising so much money was heartwarming.

“We are delighted to have raised so much money for a charity that provides specialist support and Admiral Nurses for families affected by dementia.

“We had a brilliant party at the end of the day. We celebrated the walk with a party until the early hours.

“I saw some nasty blisters, but that didn’t stop people dancing like no one was watching.”


Main Image: Alpha residents Phyllis Swarbrick, 67 (behind man in yellow), and Barbara Cameron, 73 (behind lady in grey), with a group of the walkers


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