One year of walking: Jim’s mission in aid of the GWT
One year ago today, Jim Morton set out to walk the coastline of mainland Britain to fulfil a lifelong ambition of seeing the country’s lighthouses, while raising funds for The Gurkha Welfare Trust. Setting off from his home in Penistone on 12 April 2021, he spent 8 months trekking Scotland’s coast before crossing over to the Northeast of England earlier this year. Now he has reached the coast of Kent, walked over 5,750 miles, and has raised more than £18,500 for the GWT. Not to mention, he’s worn out three sets of walking boots and one pair of shoes!
“The 12th of April last year seems like a lifetime ago, and so much as happened,” said Jim. “Pleased to still be in one piece and free from injury. The greatest triumph has been raising more than £18,500, and the biggest obstacle was getting around Scotland. It was never ending – it took 8 months and 10 days, 3,838 miles.
“The motivation comes from knowing I am doing it for a good cause and my determination to raise £50,000 for The Gurkha Welfare Trust,” Jim said.
While Jim is out walking, his wife Sue supports him from their motorhome. She maps out the best route to meet him at the end of each day, sorts out a campsite for them to stay at each night, and even manages Jim’s social media and press coverage.
“Most nights we stay on somebody’s drive who we’ve never met before, connect to their electricity, sometimes we’re invited in for meals or we use their washing machine,” Jim said in an interview with the East Anglian Daily Times.
“The main person I would like to thank is my wife Sue who drives the motorhome and basically does everything in the operation apart from walk.”
Along his journey, Jim has had the opportunity to meet plenty of people and share his passion for supporting Gurkha veterans, their families, and communities in Nepal. Jim has felt a special connection with the Gurkhas since he served on HMS Gurkha in 1977. “It’s not the places we have been, but the people we have met that we will remember,” he said.