Lesley follows in her fathers footsteps at Nijmegen Marches

Having done The MoonWalk London 3 times I decided to do something a little different... when I told my plans to my dad I couldn't even pronounce Nijmegen

Walk the Walker, Lesley, walked the Nijmegen Marches for Walk the Walk in memory of her dad, Barrie Slater. Barrie did The Nijmegen Marches whilst serving in the 50th Missile Regiment of the Royal Artillery in 1960. 

Lesley's Story... 

“Having done The MoonWalk London 3 times I decided to do something a little different this year. I have wanted to do this challenge in Holland for a few years. When I told my plans to my dad I couldn't even pronounce Nijmegen - he smiled and said “it’s NIJMEGEN, and I did that in 1960 when I was in the army so if you do it I will be there on the finishing line.” When I popped in to see dad the following week he had found his medal and a photo of him in Nijmegen. I can’t remember exactly when he did it but it was either the late fifties or early sixties.

The Nijmegen 4 Day Marches is the largest walking event in the World, with an astounding 47,000 participants. The Walk the Walk Team will be taking on a 40k walk per day over 4 consecutive days as a Civilian Marching Team; that's 160km or 100 miles... WOW!

Unfortunately, my dad passed away in 2017 from a short illness (4 weeks from diagnosis) of lung cancer. This year would have been his 80th birthday, so it seemed fitting that I should raise some more money for a charity close to my heart. I have friends who’ve survived cancer, but I’ve also lost friends to the disease. I have supported cancer charities over the last 17 years, so here I am taking up the same challenge my dad did 50 years ago.


The training has gone really well. I get up early most day and go for a training walk… sometimes around 9 miles.

I’ve walked from my home to Darley dale – around 20 miles from my home – at least 5 times over the years and I love it! I don’t listen to music as I walk as I really enjoy listening to the birds. I chat to people along the way too, if someone is out mowing the grass I’ll just say “hi, how’s your day going?"

I work as a Care Coordinator in a doctors surgery for 12hrs a week. Plus I take 3 chair-based exercise classes for the elderly and those who have mobility issues. I also offer companionship to those whose main carer might have an appointment or just need a little break. I just fit my training in around my commitments but it seems to work well. My dog Rosie, a Tibetan Terrier, comes out for walks with me to but 10 miles is definitely far enough for her.


To help my fundraising, I’ve been working hard to find things that others might find enjoyable. We had a pre-loved sale at our local Labour Club where we sold donated clothing for 50p an item or if it still had the label in it, a minimum donation of £3 was asked for. That raised £1300.00 and I was so pleased!

We then had a special quiz night on the 1st June raising an amazing £1418.75 making the total fundraising so far climb to £3254.85! We even had a donation of a lodge break at Ashbourne Lodge and over 70 raffle prizes and I’m so grateful to everyone that donated something to help the cause. There’s just one more event planned now and that will be a coffee and cake afternoon on the 22nd June at the Flamsteed Centre in Ilkeston.

My friends have asked me if I’m nervous about taking on such a huge challenge but actually I’m actually feeling really positive right now. I know I am training properly, I’m having weekly massages and looking after my feet, I’m just really excited and looking forward to July!

Feeling Inspired? 

Why not take on a Walk the Walk challenge in 2020?!

Raise money, Raise awareness, Get fit and Have fun... and make memories with the Walk the Walk family! 


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