Charity couple raise £275,000 and aim higher in Dorset

Chris Lewis and Kate Barron have arrived in Dorset, continuing their march around the whole of the UK. They have already walked thousands of miles over the last five and a half years to raise funds for SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity. They now continue their epic journey around the spectacular Dorset coastline.


The couple, who met whilst walking, are hoping to raise £300,000 before they reach full circumnavigation at Swansea in Wales.

On the journey so far, Chris has rescued a dog, Jet, who has become his constant companion; he met his soulmate, Kate, with whom he now has baby Magnus; he has written a book; they are filming for a Channel 5 series, and the little family has gathered a cult following as they traversed the UK’s rugged coastline.

Rain or shine, before baby Magnus came along, Chris and Kate slept out in a tent or under the stars. With the arrival of a baby, they upgraded to a VW camper van, which Chris is delighted to say just passed it’s MOT – the van is a moody beast and has caused them some unscheduled stops in the past. For ablutions and getting warm, Chris and Kate rely on the kindness of strangers. The little family have just been rescued from terrible November rain by Dorset based brewery, Hall and Woodhouse.

Chris says:

“We are so grateful to Hall and Woodhouse, the weather has been really bad and they kindly offered us a few nights accommodation to see us through the worst of it. It has been a life saver. Total luxury, and the staff are amazing – so kind!”

Chris is a veteran of the Parachute Regiment. He initially needed some support from SSAFA after leaving the Armed Forces and losing his direction. SSAFA’s caseworker put Chris on the path to recovery, and, literally, on the path around Great Britain. Chris spent lockdown on a tiny, uninhabited island called Hildasay in the Northern Hebrides with only Jet for company. His book, Finding Hildasay, is due to be published in February 2022. He met Kate shortly after this and the pair have carried on walking together. There are still the Channel Islands and Scilly Isles to be walked around, not to mention the rest of the coastline from Dorset to Swansea, so plenty of time for them to hit their £300,000 target.

Kate says:

“We don’t know what we want to do next. We are focussing on completing this adventure and raising as much money for SSAFA as we can, then we will definitely be moving on to another adventure. We aren’t really the kind of people to settle down.”

If you would like to support Chris, and veterans like him, visit his fundraising page and donate to SSAFA

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