A FARNHAM man has raised more than £500 for charity Ataxia UK after walking the equivalent distance from his home to his GP – no mean feat for someone living with the debilitating condition.
Ataxia is a neurological condition which can affect co-ordination, balance and speaking - with estimates that there are at least 10,000 adults in the UK with Ataxia.
The local support group had planned to set up a table at Farnham Hospital to help promote and raise funds for the charity, but because of Covid-19 restrictions it was not possible.
Instead, Derek came up with the idea of walking from his home to his registered doctor’s surgery - a total of 3.3km - but soon realised this wouldn’t be possible, opting to visit his local gym and walk the distance over the course of three days on a treadmill.
Derek said: "When I was approached by the people at Ataxia UK, I was a bit sceptical because physical challenges are not my sort of thing.
"They suggested that we should either walk, run or cycle - two of those are a non-starter for me.
"When I suggested to my wife from Weybourne to my surgery, she said I was mad. I thought instead I should be doing it from my gym.
"I have to say it was most challenging, but I really enjoyed it."
Derek gave praise to all those at his gym - People for Places Leisure in Aldershot - who had been "brilliant" with helping to put up balloons and hand out leaflets on the Ataxia group.
So far, Derek has raised more than £500 for the charity.