CRY Heart of Durham Walk 2019 Write Up
2019 is a special year for the CRY Heart of Durham Walk, as it marks 10 years since the first walk in Durham! On Saturday 5th October we were joined by 219 participants (along with their babies, toddlers and dogs in tow!) and as always, it was an emotional sight to see everyone coming together, to walk in memory and support of a young person.
The Walk took in iconic sites such as Durham Cathedral and Castle, the River Wear, Durham Town Hall and Market Place, where CRY had a branded marquee with an awareness stand and water station.
We were so lucky that the rain held off, providing a dry day for all those involved. Many local people, along with the walkers, visited the CRY water station. We were very grateful to be based in the heart of the city centre, and for local singer, Ashley Stirling, to be positioned so close to the CRY marquee. Ashley’s performance attracted many visitors and generous donations, creating a really positive atmosphere to help us raise even more awareness!
As always, everything was a real team effort! The event was attended by CRY staff Lily Burke, Hiddy Denizer, Cara MacMillan, Chloe Watson and Rebecca Zouvani. And, thanks to the ongoing co-operation of staff at Durham Amateur Rowing Club, we were able to drop off and set up everything on the Friday night, saving valuable time on the Saturday morning (which is always a very early start for staff and volunteers, with a swift set up required at Durham Amateur Rowing Club and Durham Market Place).
Hot drinks and breakfast rolls were served at the Rowing Club for the participants, who started arriving at 9.30am. Throughout the morning, participants checked in at the Registration Desk and chatted amongst themselves, looking at the CRY displays and taking “selfies” using CRY’s selfie frames.
As we waited for everyone to arrive, CRY staff and our loyal photographer, Doug Moody, took photos for the local press.
Thanks to our supporters, the event once again enjoyed some local press coverage before and after the event, including an article in the Northern Echo. We anticipate further coverage over the coming weeks thanks to the amazing willingness of our families to share and talk about their own personal experience of young sudden cardiac death.
The vast majority of people who took part – some for the first time, and others who take part year after year – did so in memory of a young person who they had tragically lost to young sudden cardiac death.
This year we had families from several parts of the UK as well as County Durham and Tyne and Wear, including Northumbria, Scotland, London, Manchester, Merseyside, Yorkshire, Derbyshire, Gloucestershire, Cleveland, the Midlands and Cumbria.
They were taking part or volunteering in memory of and in support of Meghan Adams; Jack Balfour; Christopher George Britton; Steffani Broughton; Andrew James Callender; Stephen Carey; Charlie Craig; Tom Day; Ashley Goodwin; Dean Henderson; Dale Holder; Damien Jewell; Eleanor Keeler; Alan Lumley; Stephanie Charlotte McLean; Levon Morland; Grant Munro; James Murgatroyd; Andrew Oliver; Charlotte Orwin; Kevin Paterson; James Pilfold; Christopher Rushton; Robert Daniel Smith; Lewis Stewart; Natalie Stewart, Darren Uscroft; and David White.
How it all began… and how it continues to grow
Once everyone had checked in, we assembled outside the Rowing Club. The event’s founder, Jeff Morland welcomed everyone and provided some interesting background to the Walk. He then introduced his good friend Steve Percival, who has played a huge part in helping the event go from strength to strength over the years. Steve thanked the participants, Durham Amateur Rowing Club and volunteers and conveyed some of CRY’s latest news and developments. He highlighted the fact that CRY families have supported the screening of over 210,000 young people since 1995, including the recent CRY screening event in memory of Levon Morland, hosted by Durham Amateur Rowing Club.
Steve also gave out some safety instructions and a few fascinating facts about the figure 10, as this was the 10th year of the Durham Walk! He concluded with a poignant moment by reading out the names of the young people in whose memory people were walking or volunteering before wishing them all a pleasant walk.
The walkers then set off with a bottle of water and donated chocolate bars! They were able to collect more water at the CRY stand in Durham Market Place, manned by CRY staff Rebecca Zouvani and volunteers Dom Exton and Nicki Trewhitt. First aid cover was provided by ResQ Support.
Each walker was later welcomed back to the Rowing Club, once again, by volunteers Marilyn Robinson and Jean Spence who were unable to take part with their families but wanted to help on the day. Walkers were given a CRY medal and a feedback form and were encouraged to leave a message on the message wall and record their thoughts in the “Today’s Thoughts” book. Durham Amateur Rowing Club once again opened the bar and provided delicious paninis, chilli and chips for CRY staff, volunteers and the walkers on their return.
We would love to see everyone again next year. If you would like to be advised when a date for the 2020 Heart of Durham Walk has been confirmed, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you would like to upload your own write-up and photos, you can do so by clicking here
The roll-call of thank yous!
As always, we never forget that most of the walkers who participate in the Durham Walk do so for very personal reasons – all of us at CRY appreciate their tremendous effort and courage in taking part.
We are also very grateful to the following companies and organisations for their support of this event:
• Colin Wilkes, James Wilson and Durham Markets Company Ltd for providing CRY with a free awareness stand in The Market Place, Durham.
• Durham Amateur Rowing Club for providing a great venue at a discount, year after year, and to Mark Bell and his team, Graham and John, for making us so welcome and helping out with setting up and packing up.
• Durham University Cricket Club for allowing us the use of the club’s car park.
• Durham Safety Advisory Group and Asset Management Team for approving the route.
• Emily Crisps for donating bags of their banana fruit crisps.
• Nākd and Trek Wholefoods for donating snack bars.
• Radflex for donating chocolate bars. This donation is secured each year by David (Joe) Crow.
• SCS for donating towards the cost of the event.
• Taylormade Timber for donating towards the cost of the event.
• The Rothley Trust for covering the cost of producing the Heart of Durham Walk leaflet.
CRY would also like to thank all the local organisers and volunteers for their help before, during and after the event: helping to organise the event and attending meetings; obtaining necessary permissions; carrying out a risk assessment; marking out the route; promoting the event; pre-event telephone calls and emails; marshalling; assembling walkers’ packs; distributing walk leaflets; registering walkers; manning a stand; handing out water, chocolate bars, medals and feedback forms; and clearing up.
We really couldn’t run an event like this, so far away from the CRY office, without the help of our dedicated volunteers and helpers:
Lola Atkinson; David (Joe) Crow; Don Exton; Jim Henderson; Tony Holder; David Jewell; Marie Miller; Jeff Morland; Marianne Mortemore; Wendy Moss; Steve Percival; Marilyn Robinson; Jean Spence; Nicki Trewhitt; John, Graham and Gene from Durham Amateur Rowing Club.
Special thanks, once again, must go to Jeff Morland and Steve Percival, the original instigators of the walk, for helping to organise the event and making it all happen each year.