Teacher’s London to Brighton Ultra Challenge

Three teachers from Patcham High School took part in the gruelling London to Brighton challenge to raise over £2,000 for Rockinghorse.

Candice Hall, Zara Phillips and Sarah Merriman took part in the event where participants can walk, jog or run the London to Brighton Challenge, starting in Richmond on Thames and finishing at Brighton Racecourse.

Candice, Zara and Sarah with their medals

The event is one of the Ultra Challenge series offering people the chance to undertake a range of great challenges across the country. In the London to Brighton version the 1,500 competitors could choose to cover 25km, 50km or the full 100km distance – which is the option that Candice, Zara and Sarah chose.

The group chose us as their charity after discussions with their students. Candice explained: “As we work in Brighton, we wanted to choose a local charity. We asked one of our Y11 students who has quite a lot of medical needs which charity he would like us to fundraise for and he chose Rockinghorse as he has spent a lot of time over the years up at the Royal Alex.”

A challenge like this certainly isn’t something that you undertake without the proper training but as Candice and Zara are both PE teachers at the school, they knew how to plan their schedule and their fundraising.

Candice said: “We started fundraising and training in January. We started off with small distances for training and built up to walking for 5 hours at a time.”

“The fundraising started off just at school then we expanded to friends and family. So many people were so generous with their donations including mine and Sarah’s families in Australia who also donated.”

And on the day itself, the group, named the Wondering Wombats, set off at 7.00am on Saturday morning, crossing the finishing line just before midday the next day.

Candice described their experience: The event was extremely challenging. The atmosphere was great and lots of people sharing their stories along the way. There was a couple of brutal downhills that made things tough and staying awake during the night walk was hard.

However, we kept going as we knew so many people had donated, and we wanted to make sure we finished it. When we saw Brighton, it motivated us to speed up and make it to the finish before 12.00pm on Sunday.”

Emma Cunliffe, Supporter Engagement Manager at Rockinghorse, thanked the group for all their efforts: We are so grateful to Candice, Sarah and Zara for choosing to walk an epic 100km for Rockinghorse! They pushed themselves (and their feet!) to the limit and raised an amazing amount for babies, children and young people across Sussex.”

And if this has inspired you to take on your own Ultra Challenge, take a look at the different events that you can sign up for here.

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