On Saturday the 9th of July, Ben Allen left with Simon Cherry and Matthew Mew for his 7 day Imperial March in aid of The Joe Ellis Trust. His adventure started at Costa Coffee, Newport. We saw a large turn out of supporters who came to wave him off. After the majority of the Vectis Remnant Squad had greeted the crowds and posed for photos, Darth Vader’s famous theme played out accross St James Street and Ben and Darth exited Costa through a Star Wars guard of honour.
Ben went on to pose for photos and said a few words to explain the importance of his walk, thank his sponsors Wightfibre, Not The Safe Route and Wight Trash and also thanked supporters who so far have raised over £4,000.
The photos below provide a brief summary of the morning including supporters approaching the Wightfibre stand to ask about our latest offers, Ben just before he left and The Vectis Remnant squad doing what they do best!
We’ll be catching up with Ben’s Imperial March each day to let you know hows they are getting on…
Day One – Newport to Lymington
Ben certainly started as he means to go on! After his farewell party, Ben and his team walked the scenic route passing through Carisbrooke & Calbourne and finally Yarmouth where they received a lift by speedboat over to there first stop – Lymington, thanks to Steve Shurmer and Jamie Busby.
Day Two – Lymington to Salisbury
One of the longer days for the Imperial March team. Day two saw the boys combat 33 long miles over 13 hours. They set out with Salisbury Cathedral in their sights and didn’t lose their focus.
Day Three – Salisbury to Andover
“Quick sock change/blister count/energy gel/water break/find cover from the rain/hear Simons boring stories” – this was posted on Facebook by team mate Matthew Mew as they stopped for a midday break. Day three saw the team completing an exhausting 29 miles! They were all starting to struggle with incredibly sore feet, but that didn’t dampen their spirits.
Day Four – Andover to Fleet
Half way mark! Today (Tuesday the 12th July) the guys left Andover with increasingly painful feet and are heading for Fleet. Becoming quite the celebrity, Ben met Star Wars actor Brian Wheeler in Whitchurch and was seen filming with Joe Pasquale in Overton.
Day Five – Fleet to Heathrow
Day five and the Imperial March team are walking from Fleet to Heathrow via Windsor! Throughout today, Ben still managed to make time at 1pm to be interviewed by America’s ‘ABC’ Channel by telephone!
*Update* 10pm and they have just arrived in Heathrow, time to bed down for the night. Ben has just posted to the Bens Imperial March Group on Facebook saying “Day 5 done. Hardest yet by a country mile”.
Day Six – Heathrow to Westminster
One of the busiest days yet for the Imperial March team! They walked from Heathrow to Westminster and attracted a lot of attention along the way. Ben was mobbed by tourists and school parties who wanted a photo with him. Obviously, Ben obliged saying “I’ve spoken to people from Germany, Belgium, Ireland, Argentina, Peru, Jamaica to name but a few.”, this will really help to spread awareness for The Joe Ellis Trust. Ben also spoke to BBC Radio Solent and visited Rob Da Bank at Soho Radio.
Can’t wait for our next blog update? We are following Ben’s progress throughout the days closely and you can too, by liking our Facebook and following us on Twitter