A Freemason from Lincoln has walked 2,000km in ten months to raise money for Blind Veterans UK, the charity which has greatly improved the life of one of his fellow lodgemates.
Nigel Herbert began his challenge in March last year and passed his 2,000km target on 12 January raising over £1,000.
Travelling around the United Kingdom in his motorhome, with his trusty dog Reuben by his side, Nigel continued to walk until 31 January even though he had already reached his target.
His final total was 2,057km. He clocked up 410 hours and walked an incredible 2,780,000 steps!
His walking took him to some stunning locations including Bernard Castle, North Berwick, the Derbyshire Dales, the Shropshire Hills and the Northumberland coast.
Nigel has held the position of Master of Lindum Lodge for the past year and handed over the reins last week.
“One of the biggest privileges of holding the role is that you’re able to select the beneficiary which is supported for the year. I chose Blind Veterans UK as it’s a charity close to me.
“My father served in the British Army for 25 years and I therefore have an affinity to the military even though I didn’t serve myself.
“I was further inspired to raise money for the charity after I met George, a fellow lodgemate and blind veteran, who told me about the support he had received from Blind Veterans UK.
“I have seen first-hand some of the extraordinary work the charity does. The direct help and support he receives from Blind Veterans UK, including a respite stay at the charity’s Llandudno Wellbeing Centre, has been of great benefit to him.
“George served in the British Army as a medic and is a very resilient man. He lost his dear wife, Irene, three and a half years ago after 66 years of marriage and has no other family so is very much alone.
“I wanted to raise money to enable Blind Veterans UK to keep supporting men and women like George. My walking challenge has enabled me to not just do that but to also mark my year as Master of the lodge.
“As Freemasons our goal is to be happy and spread happiness and I hope I have done that.”
As well as Nigel’s personal walking challenge which has raised £1,060, Blind Veterans UK has also benefited from the lodge’s fundraising throughout the year, including a BBQ and an autumn ball, which saw a cheque for £1,175 handed to the charity.
If you are inspired by Nigel and would like to take on a challenge for Blind Veterans UK visit the charity’s website: blindveterans.org.uk/fundraise
Blind Veterans UK supports thousands of blind veterans across the country, but knows there are many thousands more who still need its support to rebuild their lives after sight loss.
If you, or someone you know, served in the Armed Forces, including National Service, and are now struggling with sight loss, then please get in touch. Call 0800 389 7979 or visit blindveterans.org.uk/support