JULIAN Lewis and Dan Smethurst are preparing for a Boys Own-style adventure that will help disabled people enjoy holidays in the Cotswolds.
The intrepid pair are going to be tackling the 101-mile Cotswold Way and then the 260-mile Pembrokeshire Coast Path in the space of two week, camping along the way and swimming in rivers and from remote beaches as they go.
They are aiming to raise £2,000 to help Cotswold Volunteers buy a new £20,000 specially adapted vehicle adapted for wheelchair users.
Julian from Malmesbury, said they were drawn to the challenge by the interesting nature and the terrain.
A veteran hiker and cyclist he completed the Hadrians Wall path last year, raising £4,000 for Cancer Research, but admitted he found the route “dull as ditch water.”
He has also raised £10,000 for Ataxia patients by cycling from Lands End to John O’Groat and pedalled the length of Wales for Wiltshire Air Ambulance.
He and Dan are currently walking 100 miles a month and cycling another 200 in training to tackle the hills and valleys in the Cotswold and the dramatic landscape in West Wales. And they are livening it up by taking an occasional dip.
“We try to follow the Avon so we can swim in it for a bit of a laugh,” he said.
Carrying 15 kilo rucksacks with supplies and camping gear, they will be joined by friend Dave Talkowski on the first walk, which they aim to complete within three days of setting off on April 18. It will mean walking an average of 33 miles a day.
Then on May 3, Julian, a sales executive for Utility Networks and Dan who works as a chartered accountant, will set out on the even tougher coastal challenge.
“We hope to get it done by the eighth or nineth, but it could be longer,” said Julian. One of the delays could be caused by the urge to swim off some of the country’s most beautiful and isolated beaches.
“We’re going to swim in as many coves as possible. I’ve always had a fascination with beaches and I don’t think they get any better than in Britain.”
Visit justgiving.com/Julian-Lewis2 to sponsor them.