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Community / Mammoth effort as James completes London to Brighton challenge for kidney charity

James Cruickshank pictured on the right after finishing.

A SHETLAND man has raised more than £1,000 for the local kidney patient association after completing a gruelling challenge to travel by foot from London to Brighton.

James Cruickshank took just under 30 hours to run and walk the 100km distance.

He took on the challenge to “give something back to the charity that helped my parents when they needed it”.

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A total of £1,040 was raised for the Shetland Kidney Patient Association.

Chairperson Evelyn Begg said it was a “magnificent effort in completing the London to Brighton walk, a distance of 100k over rough terrain in challenging conditions”.

“During the very difficult stretches of the walk, he was sustained by thoughts of his parents, both of whom had suffered renal problems,” she added.

“The association had been able to help them with support at a difficult time in their lives and this had prompted his desire to help raise much needed funds to help others in a similar situation.

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“The association are extremely grateful for his mammoth effort and will now be on better financial position to help improve the well being of those renal patients in need of support.”

James started the challenge with some fellow participants at 8.40am on 29 May, and he hoped to arrive in Brighton by 9am the next day.

He said that between 25km and 40km there was “rough terrain, steep hills, narrow rocky paths and woodland”.

“We were beat by 40km and rested about 40 mins before we got the energy to carry on,” Cruickshank said.

“The next stopping point was at 56km, so we had 16km to go before we could rest again.

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“The ground got no easier and we started to have blisters forming and we were going half the speed it was a long struggle onto 56km.

“We spent nearly two hours at the 56km mark, putting more clothes on as the temperature dropped, getting blisters treated, getting our calves taped up as they were agony and stretched.”

He set off again at 12.15am and “walked through pitch darkness, through fields, woodlands and mud and tough terrain” – before James twisted his knee and was ready to give up.

But he slogged on with the help of medics, hot tea, sugary snacks and a bacon roll and reached the finished line some 29 hours, 55 minutes and six seconds after starting.

People can still donate to James’ fundraiser here.

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