Saturday, 1st May 2021
Ten years ago, on 29th April, Prince William married Kate. The day was a public holiday, which gave us time to get ready for our first ‘Hit the Road’ walk the following day. A group of us at The Campion School who quite liked walking had decided that it would be a good idea to organise a sponsored walk, in aid of the Teenage Cancer Trust, following the death in the previous September of sixth former Jack Chester.
Our first walk in 2011 from Campion to University College Hospital took us past the picturesque sites of Romford, Ilford, a pre-Olympic Stratford, Bow Flyover and Commercial Road wearing blue t-shirts with a massive TCT logo on the back that made us all sweat. Fast forward to 2019 and the boring routes have been replaced by new and more interesting routes each year and the first uncomfortable t-shirt has been replaced by colourful, good quality t-shirts. 350 people took part in the walk from Regents Park to Canary Wharf via parks, rivers and a disused railway line. It looked as though nothing could stop this annual event and then a pandemic hit us!!
Not to be beaten, in 2020, Campion staff and students, past and present, their families, their friends, their friend’s friends, Jack’s family and friends and all their family and friends (if I’ve missed anyone out, I apologise), planned routes of their own, put on one of their old t-shirts and Hit the Park to raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust and the NHS.
We were really hoping to get back to our organised walk this year but, again, it was not to be. Once again, however, people found one of their old t-shirts, planned a route and made a donation to the Teenage Cancer Trust through the Just Giving site.
So far, this year, we have raised over £2,800.
A message has been received from Yvonne Mackintosh, Teenage Cancer Trust, Relationship Manager, London & East Anglia
“I would just like to take this opportunity to thank you on behalf of Teenage Cancer Trust. You are all amazing. Jack would be so proud of each and every one of you. It was fantastic to see your beautiful photos on Facebook of your awesome walks in London, Essex, the Chiltern Hills, Brighton, Southampton, Edinburgh and even more wonderful towns, cities and countryside, not to mention the fabulous colourful t-shirts from past walks and the wonderful pub gardens. A sincere heartfelt thank you for your continued support. It means so much to us as a charity and the young people that we support”
Another message has been received from Carol Chester, Jack’s mum
“I just wanted to say on behalf of Tom, Jack’s brother, and myself, how honoured we are that ‘Hit the Road (or Park) for Jack’ is still supported and such a major fundraising event for TCT. We appreciate the effort and respect shown by so many people for Jack who showed such courage and positivity throughout his illness. We are so proud of his legacy and want to say a big ‘Thank you’ to everyone involved. Let’s hope that we can all celebrate together next year.
Lots of love,
Finally, you need to make a note in your diary of next year’s walk. It is Saturday 30th April 2022
You are such a wonderful group of people and we cannot thank you enough for your continued support.
and the Hit the Road Committee