Elsenham women continue to walk for charity in honour of two friends

The Midnight Walkers

The Midnight Walkers - Credit: Archant

Two women from Elsenham will be taking part in St Clare Hospice’s Midnight Walk for the sixth year in a row.

Lindsey Peters and Joanne McEwen were first moved to walk in memory of two of their best friends and continue to walk in their memory every summer, with this year’s event on Saturday, July 2.

Joanne, 54, said: “We started taking part in the Midnight Walk in 2010, the summer after two of our best friends, Linda Clayden and Alexis Hughes-Hughes, sadly passed away.

“I met Linda and Alexis at an ante-natal group years ago and we became lifelong friends. It was such a shock when we lost both Linda and Alexis within just four months of each other. Linda received amazing care at St Clare Hospice so we wanted to give something back to the charity.”

She added: “When we did our first Midnight Walk in 2010, we gathered a big group of us and walked with our daughters – including Linda and Alexis’ daughters. It was such a wonderful and moving atmosphere, walking in memory of our loved ones and sharing the experience with so many others whose lives have been touched by St Clare. When you look back at the sea of people gathered in their St Clare t-shirts it is just so touching.”

Lindsey, 60, who is a member of the Elsenham Women’s Institute, is gathering a team together from the group for 2016.

She said: “When the posters with the photo of Jo and I went up all around the local area, our phones wouldn’t stop buzzing. All our friends were phoning to say they had seen us on the poster. We thought as we are the poster girls for 2016 we better get a bigger team together than ever before.”

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“We are going to be walking with the Gilbey Girls, another name for the Elsenham WI, and other friends. We are taking the costumes very seriously, going back to the 70s with our neon leggings and tutus will be compulsory.”

Lindsey, whose mother received support from a hospice said: “St Clare is like a beacon of light. There is nothing like the care it gives. They don’t just support the person who is ill; they are there for their loved ones as well.”

She added: “When my mum was unwell my dad was her main carer, and I know he found the hospice’s telephone advice line hugely important. Sometimes he just needed to have the reassurance of a clinical professional saying, ‘yes, you’re doing the right thing.’ You have no idea how much that helps.”

Information: Tickets for the Midnight Walk are on sale at £20 per adult (16 and above) and £10 for children (11-15).

To register go to: http://stclarehospice.org.uk/event/midnight-walk-2016/ or call 01279 773756 or email jade.clarke@stclarehospice.org.uk