New Forest War Walk, June 4/5th 2021

Zinzan with Chair Simon Bailey and Alan Lamb

A group of thirty Rugby For Heroes walkers crossed Hampshire’s New Forest to raise funds for the charity. We are all keen to see the Transition Through Rugby courses re started post lockdown, and the walkers were aiming to raise £15,000 in sponsorship in order to make that happen.

We covered nearly thirty miles over two days, stopping at various WW1 and WW2 sites of interest along the way. Situated as it is between the Salisbury Plain – home to so many service units – and the Solent – the sea route for many during both wars, the New Forest offers a real insight into the country’s war effort. The group walked along abandoned runways and old bombing ranges, and we paid our respects at war graves in quiet country churchyards and at village memorials.

The support along the route of charity ambassadors and guests was much appreciated. Ospreys and Wales skipper Ryan Jones set a furious pace on Day 1, and the appearance of All Black legend Zinzan Brooke on Day 2 meant a great deal to us all. TV’s Nick Knowles was able to take a break from filming to join us as we laid a wreath at Lepe, and displayed his BBQing skills that evening.

As the blisters go down, and feet/knees/hips/backs/livers recover, all members of the party – walkers, support team, sponsors – can look back on a weekend when rugby remembered.

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New Forest Fundraising Walk