Kington Walks is hosting a walk for people with scooters as part of Kington Walks 2016.
Richard Wood, who is leading the walk, uses a Tramper. He is going to run the walk that will go over Hergest Ridge towards Gladestry and back.
It is taking place on Sunday September 18th 2016. Further details will shortly be available on the website (www.kingtonwalks.org), where tickets can be booked.
For further information please contact Richard (07436 016366 or email email@example.com).
An intrepid oarsman who rowed across the Atlantic single-handed to raise money for charity before suffering a stroke, is to lead Kington Walking Festival’s first ever event for disabled people.
Richard Wood was preparing to make a 20,000-mile round-the-world voyage with five other rowers – but after an arduous training session, he returned home with a headache and went to lie down.
When he awoke an hour or so later, the former youth worker struggled to haul himself upright and realised something was wrong.
Richard’s life changed without warning when he suffered the sudden stroke on December 11, 2006.
In 2004, Richard became the 11th person to row solo the Canary Islands to Barbados route across the Atlantic. His first attempt had ended in failure but his eventual epic of endurance raised £50,000 for St Richard’s Hospice in Worcester and resulted in a book about his adventure ‘Naked Ambition: My Quest to Row an Ocean’.
But the stroke has left him unable to walk unaided, he suffers seizures and as a result can no longer drive and he has difficulty with his vision on his left side.
After four and a half months in Worcester Royal Infirmary, Richard then spent months working with physiotherapists to re-educate the left side of his body, to help it to relearn how to move and walk.
Doctors identified that the father of three had a cerebral arterial dissection, where one of the brain’s main arteries had split, but they remain unsure as to what triggered the stroke, as his condition may have been dormant for some time.
Richard is now preparing to lead a walk for disabled people as part of Kington Walking Festival – the first ever such event.
The festival, which is in its fifth year, takes place from September 15 to 18. It features a wide range of walks in the Kington and Welsh border areas as well as events including a goulash evening, talks and a music event.
The festivals’ first ever walk for the disabled is call ‘Walkability Walk on Hergest Ridge’ and it will take place on Sunday, September 18, starting at 11am from the car park at Hergest Croft gardens.
The “walk” is designed for those with mobility problems who have their own all terrain/ off road wheelchair or vehicle.
The journey over Hergest Ridge will enable walkers to experience some sensational views over the Welsh Borders while having the confidence of assistance should the need arise and other people to enjoy it with.
There are no obstructions and whilst the terrain includes a long and constant climb none of it is unduly demanding.
Richard said: “I am really looking forward to leading this walk and meeting different people. It will be a bit of an adventure, not quite the Atlantic crossing, but it is good to get people out and about and to give them a bit of a challenge.
“Many people will probably only use their mobility scooters to go to their local shops and so on and hopefully, hearing about my story will give them a little bit of motivation and encourage then to try this walk. Of course, there will be support on hand in case people experience any problems.”
Festival volunteers will accompany this walk and an emergency facility has been arranged if there are any problems with your means of transport.
Disabled toilet facilities are available at Hergest Croft for the start and end of the walk plus a tearoom for a nice cup of tea if you need a reviving cup, with the satisfaction you have achieved something special even with any restrictions you may have!
Richard is also hoping that an organisation called Events Mobility may be able to offer mobility scooters for hire, if people do not have their own.
Please ring Richard (07436 016366) for more details of the walk or queries.
For more information about Kington Walking Festival visit kingtonwalks.org.