Martin Parnell as he traverses the South West Coast Path
of England, covering 630 miles in 25 days in support of
Right To Play.
Martin began the Quest on Tuesday March 4th at 8:30am
and will finish on Tuesday April 1st at 11:00am.
From Minehead in Somerset to Poole in Dorset, the route
passes through two World Heritage Sites, the Dorset
and East Devon coast. The South West Coast Path (SWCP)
is the longest and most popular of the UK’s 15
National Trails. Martin is taking on this challenge
in order to raise £100,000 for Right To Play.
Right To Play uses sport and play to educate and empower
children and youth in some of the world’s most
disadvantaged communities. By taking on this challenge,
Martin and those who support him will enable Right To
Play to reach a further 3,333 children as it costs Right
To Play just £30 to put a child who is facing
poverty, conflict and disease through one of our educational
sport and play programmes for an entire year.
Start March 4 - Luis, a young supporter of Rotary
Coastal Quest 630 at the start of the South West
Coastal Path in Minehead, Somerset.
March 4 - Sure footed friend along the path heading
into Lynmouth. Section 1 done and dusted.
March 4th 2014 - Day 1
At 6.00am the alarm went off and so the first day of
Rotary Coastal Quest 630 began. Sue, Lyn, Cal and I headed
down to breakfast. A bowl of granola, yogurt, banana and
milk later it was time to pack the car. David came down
and we loaded up the suitcase, backpack and “Goodlife”
sports bag. He gave me a lift to the SWCP statue and already
people were milling around the sea front. Marlene was
there with her daughter Bev and Bev’s son Luis.
The previous night Bev had presented me a cheque for £350,
at the Rotary Club of Minehead and Quantocks, for Right
Sue, Lyn and Cal soon arrived as did a number of the
Rotary Club members and Stephen and Carol Lay. As the
clock moved to 8.30am I did a count down from 10 and blew
the whistle. I was on my way. Stephen ran with me for
1 mile then I was on my own.
The route took me to Porlock Weir, 10 miles down the
path. The heavy rains had socked the marches and it was
slow going. A little further on the sea had thrown boulders
on to the path causing a diversion along the beach. The
second half of the route was up and down the cliffs mile
after mile. A very enjoyable section was through the Culbone
Wood. However I somehow ended up at the Foreland Point
Lighthouse and had to ask the lighthouse man how to get
back on the trail. I found the conditions very difficult
and my pace dipped to 3 mile an hour.
I called Ro Day, the Rotarian who was looking after me
tonight, told her that I was running one hour late and
she said not to worry. After 21 miles of mud and marches
I arrived at Lynmouth, time for a pasty. I went back to
Ro and John’s farm house and rested up. Big day
March 17 - View from the Kynance Cove