King's Lynn teacher to walk Norfolk coast in 24 hours for charities
A King’s Lynn school teacher will walk the Norfolk coast in the summer to raise money for two charities.
Alex Walpole, a PE teacher at the King’s Lynn Academy, will endeavour to walk the Norfolk Coastal Path in just under 24 hours in aid of Parkinson’s UK and Max’s Foundation.
Mr Walpole, 27, is putting his best foot forward in memory of his late grandad Geoff, while also raising money for a pupil at the Academy who underwent major heart surgery last summer.
The King’s Lynn Town Under-21 player-coach lost his grandad, who suffered with Parkinson’s, last year.
Mr Walpole, from Fakenham, said: “My grandad had a huge influence on my life and was also very supportive throughout, coming to watch me play football.
“He came to watch me as much as he possibly could and I wouldn’t be where I am today without his support.”
His 83-mile trek around the coastal path from Hunstanton to Hopton-on-Sea will also see him raise money for Year 8 student Harry Younge.
Mr Walpole has stayed in touch with Harry and his family during lockdown after the youngster’s treatment and surgery for hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, a disease of the heart muscle.
Max’s Foundation supports young people with heart conditions and Mr Walpole said: “Harry’s favourite subject is football, but he was unable to participate in sports where he could push himself.
“When I took him for PE in Year 7 he helped me as a referee and a coach. I became friends with him on Facebook and I have stayed in touch with his family since his operation last year.
“I dread to think what it has been like for Harry and his family in lockdown. I had a chat with them and I said that I would love to raise money for them.
“They’ve obviously had to be very careful with Harry and he is going to be on medication for the rest of his life.”
Mr Walpole will be joined by his partner Lauren Buckby and a couple of other friends at different stages ofthe walk during the weekend of June 19 and 20, starting at 10am on the Saturday and finishing it by 4pm on the Sunday.
“I’m looking forward to the challenge,” said Alex, who also manages King’s Lynn Town Under-18s with Iain Wells.
“I did the Brighton Marathon in 2015 and also the Three Peaks in 2019 so this is something a little bit different.
“I just feel that I am doing something, I want to help and anything I can do is good.
“It has been an awful 2020 and I want to do something in 2021 that will help people.”
Mr Walpole, who hopes to raise more than £500, will start training in earnest from next month, once the evenings become much lighter.
You can donate to the cause online by visiting: uk.virginmoneygiving.com/AlexWalpole