Crookston charity crusade to Campbeltown

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By Hannah O’Hanlon

A couple who battled blizzards, torrential rain and agonizing injury during a ‘home from home’ challenge have raised nearly £2,000 for the Beatson Cancer Charity.

Lorna Black, 26, and John McCallum, 27, were plagued by bad weather during their planned four-day, 134-mile trek from Crookston, where they live, to their hometown of Campbeltown.

The couple decided to attempt the journey on foot, spurred on by an off-the-cuff comment John made on New Year’s Day about getting home under their own steam.

They planned to walk from Glasgow to Arrochar on day one, Arrochar to Inveraray on day two, Inveraray to Tarbert on day three, and complete the route to Campbeltown on day four, from Tuesday to Friday last week.

But the weather proved problematic for the pair and they were forced to miss out sections.

John, who works for Arnold Clark, said: ‘The weather was a real challenge, it was against us almost the whole way.

‘We had heavy rain on day one, and snow and howling gales on the old military road at the Rest and Be Thankful on day two, which caused Lorna to injure herself.’

‘I twisted my knee in the snow coming off the Rest and Be Thankful,’ Lorna, a primary teacher, said. ‘I managed to keep going to Lochgilphead but the last two miles were agony.’

John added: ‘What should have taken 45 minutes took almost three hours.’

The couple were determined to finish the challenge strongly and arrive in Campbeltown on foot, so they decided to walk 12 miles from Glenbarr on the final day.

Lorna added: ‘I thought I had that left in my knee, and I didn’t want to do permanent damage.’

The weather was against them, once again, with wet and windy conditions for the duration of the walk, which didn’t help with Lorna’s injury, and the black and blue, blistered feet and burning calves they both suffered.

John said: ‘Your day feels longer when you’re wet and cold, as well as sore.’

The couple made it into Campbeltown despite all the odds and were welcomed by a cheering group of friends and family.

They decided to raise funds for the Beatson Cancer Charity as it has cared for some of their close relatives.

‘We are really happy to have raised a strong sum of money for a worthy charity, and are very thankful for the kindness and generosity people have shown us, both by donating and by supporting us in other ways,’ John said.

They plan to complete the parts they missed later in the spring or in summer so they will have walked every section of the traditional long and winding journey home for Campbeltonians living in Glasgow.

They were still smiling as they approached the end, despite injuries and the weather.
They were still smiling as they approached the end, despite injuries and the weather.

Lorna and John raised cash for the Beatson Cancer Charity. 50_c15homefromhome02_lorna black john mccallum beatson

They were still smiling as they approached the end, despite injuries and the weather. 50_c15homefromhome01_lorna black john mccallum smiling