Earlier this year paracanoe athlete Tim Lodge lost his mum to ovarian cancer. She had been fighting the disease for two years and was cared for at Frimley Park Hospital, the hospital at which she herself had volunteered for 25 years.
Even while the pain of losing his Mum was still raw for him, Tim knew he wanted to give something back to those who cared for her and raise awareness of the disease.
Having discovered that a new British Canoeing Challenge Route was about to be launched Tim spoke to the Go Canoeing team about whether it would be a suitable challenge for him and if he could be the first to take it on.
The 85 mile River Wye Challenge is due to be the longest yet released by British Canoeing. Set to be their first multi-day challenge, the route will start at Glasbury and travel through the Wye valley, taking in the beautiful scenery of England and Wales, finishing at Redbrook.
It is written to be taken on over 4 days but Tim didn’t feel that was going to be enough of a challenge. He had already decided to complete the challenge over just 2 days and then the Go Canoeing team told him there was one more element of toughness he could add...for the confident paddler it was possible to add another 15 miles at the end of the route, taking the challenge to 100 miles.
The final 15 miles, from Redbrook to Chepstow, is on tidal water and not included in the British Canoeing Challenge Route. For an experienced paddler like Tim, who will be paddling with others, it will take his challenge to another level.
Over two days in October I will be embarking on an epic 100 mile canoeing adventure down the River Wye from Glasbury to Chepstow. I intend to complete it in 48 hours which will be a great challenge for me as I am used to racing and training much shorter distances. I will start at Glasbury and then paddle 50 miles, camp, wake up early and then do the other 50 to Chepstow the next day.– Tim Lodge
The Frimley Park Hospital Gynaecologic Cancer Unit specialises in the treatment of gynaecologic cancer, providing expertise, support and care for patients and their families.
From the moment, Mum was diagnosed in September 2016 we received first class care in every situation we had to face. They work so very hard under great pressure and we always felt that we were their only patients. Despite all their efforts we lost our dear Muv on the 17th June. She passed peacefully in her beloved Frimley Park where she had volunteered for over 20 years. It feels right that we should keep the fundraising close to Muv’s heart at Frimley and to a unit that doesn’t normally receive much private funding.– Tim Lodge
Tim’s fundraising will raise money for training, research and equipment within the unit.The unit is funded by the NHS but private fundraising can make a real difference to these areas and allow them to do more outside of the constraints of NHS budgets. He is very keen to raise as much funds and awareness as possible for this cause.
Tim will be taking on his epic 100 mile challenge over a weekend in October. He hopes to raise £3000 for the hospital unit. You can follow the planning of his trip and the adventure itself via his Instagram page; @timmylodge. He will also be providing updates via his charity page, where you can donate to his fundraising total.