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Dad and Son Finish Charity Trek

By Jo Deeks on Tuesday, 11th September 2007.

After more than 25 years working as a GP Matthew Lawfield might have been expected to have a well earned rest. But insted he decided to set out on a mammoth journey walking the length of Britan with his 21-year-old son Tom.

Dr. Lawfield, 57, and Tom, who is just starting his third year of study at Bradford University, started there 1,250-mile trek in May and completed it 80 days later after walking from Lands End to John O'Groats, as well as the islands of Orkney and Shetland. Both keen bird watchers, they hope to raise in the region of 2,000 for the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds from sponsorship.

After returning to the family home at Helions Bumpstead, Tom said they felt privileged to have seen so much beautiful countryside, some quite rare birds and to have spent so much time together.

Tom said: "This was something that my father especially wanted to do when he retired and I was happy to join him. We actually did it slightly quicker that we expected, we did about 20 miles a day. We wanted to make it a scenic tour of Britain rather than taking the quickest route. We did it in the wettest summer on record, but we had the right clothes and we were prepared for it. We did some camping, some B&B's and even some camping barns, so it was a mix of accommodation.

"Because of the weather it was not that good for birding, but the highlight for me was seeing peregrine falcons at the very beginning of the trip, really close, and then four or five harbour porpoises in Scotland.

"We got along fine and really enjoyed being able to spend so much time together, getting into some very deep discussions. We did not have any real mishaps. We did get absolutly soaked in a gale at Cape Wrath in Scotland which was pretty hairy.

"We were really pleased with the support we got and would like to thank everyone who sponsored us."

Haverhill Weekly News

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