MORE than 100 hardy walkers and runners set off from Ilfracombe on Thursday in a gruelling charity hike for the first ever Forces March. It was the re-creation of a 132 mile wartime route march from North Devon to Wiltshire, with entrants bidding to compl

MORE than 100 hardy walkers and runners set off from Ilfracombe on Thursday in a gruelling charity hike for the first ever Forces March.

It was the re-creation of a 132 mile wartime route march from North Devon to Wiltshire, with entrants bidding to complete the equivalent of five marathons in five days to raise money for military charity Project 65.

Teams of walkers and some very dedicated runners were seen off from the swimming pool car park at Hillsborough by an honour guard of Royal British Legion standard bearers plus a lone piper, as well as Ilfracombe mayor Bob Thompson and Town Crier Roy Goodwin.

Taking part were teams from across the UK, including a number of serving forces personnel and a team from the Commando Logistics Regiment at RMB Chivenor. Devon and Cornwall Police also entered a team, as did Ilfracombe man Al Rumson and his friends, all former members of 9 Para Squadron.

Project 65 aims to raise £1,000,000 by the end of this year to give to organisations which provide care and support for wounded UK armed forces personnel and bereaved families. Find out more about the charity at www.forcesmarch.org.uk.

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