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South West Coast Path Challenge: How you can help fundraise

PUBLISHED: 15:16 04 July 2019 | UPDATED: 15:16 04 July 2019

Climbing the hill near Bossington (c) Chris Spracklen

Climbing the hill near Bossington (c) Chris Spracklen

Chris Spracklen,

An annual fundraiser for a famous footpath wants us to get on our walking boots and attempt an invigorating challenge, says Becky Millington

The South West Coast Path is the country's longest waymarked footpath and is often described as one of best walks in the world. And where does this iconic trail start? In Somerset of course! That's right, the official start of this world-famous walking trail is in Minehead. It's marked by a large sculpture on the promenade that tells walkers and runners they are on a 630 mile coastal path that goes all the way round the South West peninsula.

But looking after this amazing natural asset is a big job. It costs at least £1,000 per mile every year to maintain the path - it needs constant attention to keep it accessible. That's why the South West Coast Path Association, the charity responsible for protecting and championing the coast path, is calling on all of us to help look after it.

The South West Coast Path Challenge is a fundraising initiative that encourages us to 'show our love' for the path. Whether you're looking for a physical challenge, want to conquer a fear, set a record, go on an epic adventure, do something silly or simply celebrate your birthday in a meaningful way - fundraising for the path has never been easier.

Here are some ideas:

- Walk the whole Somerset section: Tick off a whole county by taking on the first 13 miles. With over 4,000ft of ascent it's not for the faint hearted.

- The Three Peaks Challenge: Hike up Golden Cap in Dorset, Great Hangman in North Devon and High Cliff near Boscastle in Cornwall within 36 hours.

- Pint and a Pasty: Organise a walk with friends and family finishing up at a coast path pub. Ask everyone to put a tenner in the pot for taking part.

- Pick the Path: A sponsored litter pick on your favourite five mile stretch is doing your bit to prevent plastics getting into the ocean, while raising money for the path.

Get involved:

1. Choose a part of the trail you love or is next on your list to visit.

2. Pick an activity you can do to raise sponsorship or collect donations by people joining in.

3. Register to be part of the challenge so we can support you on your fundraising journey at southwestcoastpath.org.uk/challenge

4. Set a fundraising target and create an online fundraising page on the Virgin Money Giving's website

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