Memory walk for Alzheimer’s Society in Sandringham Park raises four-figure sum

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park
Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074435009

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074435009

People of all ages and abilities strode through Sandringham Country Park on Sunday for a memory walk in aid of Alzheimer’s Society.

More than 70 people took part in either a 1.5 kilometre walk, or a longer one of 6.5 kilometres in the hope of there one day being a world without dementia.

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park
Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074422009

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074422009

Jacky Phipps, a volunteer who organises the event, said: “The walk generally attracts whole families who are passionate about supporting it, because if they have or have had somebody in their family affected by Alzheimer’s, they can understand what it’s like.”

Entry to the walk was free but more than £1,000 was raised on the day, and Mrs Phipps said her fundraising group expected to have raised about £4,000 thanks to all of the sponsorships.

The fundraising walk began at 11am and was all over by 2pm, and people were encouraged to bring their own picnics to enjoy in the 400 acres of open space afterwards.

This year marked the second year of the now annual charity walk, organised for the first time last year after Mrs Phipps’s mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and taken into residential care two years ago.

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park
Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074409009

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074409009

Mrs Phipps, of Downham, added that along with two other volunteers, Jenny Bennett and Steve Fuel, Alzheimer’s Society Fenland and West Norfolk volunteer group organise at least four fundraising events a year.

“I started the fundraising group for my mum as I wanted to try and make something positive of her illness, so I became a volunteer,” said Mrs Phipps.

Alzheimer’s Society’s dedicated Memory Walk page describes the walk asa day for everyone to come together to “celebrate loved ones affected by dementia and raise money to reclaim the future”.

Mrs Phipps said that the committee have already booked in next year’s memory walk for the first Sunday in September, and she has also had interest from another person wanting to join the committee.

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park
Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074356009

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074356009

She added: “The memory walk is growing year-on-year, and it’s so important that people get involved to raise money for this charity because after diagnosis they offer dementia cafés for carers so they can meet other people in this situation – people can feel isolated.

“You get a lot of opportunities to speak to people from Alzheimer’s Society with your concerns. It’s nice to know there are other people who understand your situation.”

There are more than 50 memory walks held around the UK every year, in aid of Alzheimer’s Society or Alzheimer Scotland, which attract more than 100,000 people.

If you are interested in jioing the volunteer group to help with future events, send an email to: jacky.phipps@alzheimers.org.uk.

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park
Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074344009

Memory Walk for Alzheimers Society held at the Sandringham Country Park Some of the walkers starting out on Sunday morning 4th Sept. ANL-160509-074344009