A warm welcome for Walk on Wales teams
11:08am Thursday 10th October 2013 in News
THE Walk on Wales team was given a hero’s welcome as it entered St Davids earlier this week.
The walkers, who are raising money for the Welsh Guards Afghanistan Appeal and Combat Stress, were greeted by a welcoming party on the cliffs above Whitesands Beach on Monday afternoon.
The Walk on Wales concept was dreamt up by two veteran Welsh Guards, Jan Koops and David Graham, who served in the Falklands War.
Both are aware of the devastating impact that active service can have on soldiers and their families, as they cope with bereavement, life-changing injuries and post traumatic stress.
The journey of remembrance began in Cardiff on August 25 and involves 11 relay teams who will cover the entire 870 miles of the Wales Coast Path. Together they hope to raise £1 million.
The teams are carrying with them a specially commissioned silver baton inscribed with the names of those 50 Welsh Guardsmen who died while serving their country in Afghanistan, the Falklands, Iraq and Northern Ireland.
The relay entered Pembrokeshire on October 3, starting in St Dogmaels, where the walkers were joined by politicians Stephen Crabb MP and Paul Davies AM.
Along the way the group received donations and the hugely popular Brawl in Berea also raised money for the team. It was held on Friday night and saw local lads going up against each other in the boxing ring.
Stage seven of the Pembrokeshire journey is being led by Jim Salmon of St Davids.
The former Welsh Guard and current Dyfed-Powys police officer said: "The welcome into St Davids was absolutely amazing. It’s been the case in every community we’ve gone through in Pembrokeshire. People have been so kind to us, they’ve given us money, food, drinks – all for free, which has kept us going.”
A blessing of the baton service was led by the Bishop of St Davids, the Rt Revd Wyn Evans
in Whitesands. Also in attendance was Canon Dorian Davies, the Mayor of St Davids, Councillor Glenys James, her consort John James, city councillors and Deborah Davies, whose cousin Sgt Pez Thomas was being remembered on the relay.
She said: “We’ve travelled down from south Devon to be here. It was a fantastic way to remember him in such a beautiful setting. It’s been a very special day.”
Cllr James said:"On behalf of the community it’s an honour to welcome the walkers as they complete their outstanding challenge. As Mayor, representing the city of St Davids, I am so proud of their accomplishment. I personally wish the team the very best of luck as they continue this legacy."
The group enjoyed some light refreshments at St David's Fire Station, before enjoying a well-deserved day off.
The next stage of the walk sees them travel from Solva to St Brides, Dale, Llanstadwell, Pwllcrochan, Freshwater West and Saundersfoot.
For more information about Walk on Wales visit www.walkonwales.org
Comments are closed on this article.