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Workers to swap dust cart for walking boots in Thames charity trek

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WELL-USED to embarking on unusual fundraising efforts, Andy Churchill is preparing for his latest venture – a 215-mile hike along the length of the River Thames.

Mr Churchill, 55, who works for Croydon Council waste contractors, Veolia Environmental Services, will be joined in the venture by colleague, Jeff Gridley.

They are both based at Veolia's depot in Factory Lane, Croydon, Mr Churchill in the offices and Mr Gridley as a dust cart driver.

The pair are aiming to raise more than £3,000 for Breast Cancer Care, the company's chosen charity.

Mr Churchill said: "We have both have done things for the charity in the past. I have had my chest waxed and my head shaved and last year I had their ribbon logo tattooed on my arm."

He said: "This year we wanted to do something different and more ambitious so we could raise more money. We have just started the process of press-ganging our mates at the depot into supporting us."

The walk will take them from the source of the Thames near Cirencester in Gloucestershire, following towpaths and other riverside routes to the Thames estuary.

Mr Churchill said: "We will be setting off on July 2 and hope to complete the walk in eight days, covering the equivalent of a marathon distance every day.

"We have started training and are out most evenings walking between 12 and 15 miles."

While the days' walking is likely to prove gruelling, at least the pair will not have to slum things at night.

Mr Churchill said: "Veolia are being brilliant. They have agreed to pay for a hotel with bed, breakfast and evening meal at every night's stopover."

Anyone wanting to add to their pair's sponsorship can visit www.justgiving.com/Andrew-Churchill1

Workers to swap dust cart for walking boots in Thames charity trek


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