The South West Coast Path Association’s Great South West Walk has come to a grand finale, raising over £500,000 for 90 planned improvement projects to the entire South West Coast Path covering Cornwall, Devon, Dorset and Somerset.
On May 7, the north and south coast relays, which had been travelling from Poole on the south coast and Minehead on the north coast since the beginning of April, met at Land’s End with an address from Malcolm Bell – Head of Visit Cornwall and Andrew Lack – Chair of the South West Coast Path Association.
The pair of red walking boots, which were separated at the start and have been passed from day to day, were reunited at the special celebration as the news broke that half a million pounds had been surpassed.
With an original target of £250,000 for 50 small but significant improvement projects to the path, over and above general maintenance, it was announced that amount was raised through corporate sponsorship and grants before the event even began in April.
Now thanks to nearly 1000 sponsored walkers, the new total of £500,000 will enable approximately 90 improvement projects to be delivered, from addressing the problems of cliff falls, through to drainage and restoration.
Chairman of the Great South West Walk, Ken Carter said, “To celebrate our 40th anniversary this year, The South West Coast Path Association organised the Great South West Walk, with the aim of raising £250,000 for 50 improvement projects around the 630 miles of South West Coast Path. We were delighted when this amount was secured before the event even started from companies sponsoring legs of the walk or improvement projects, alongside grants from Natural England and the Rural Development Programme”.