Carole & Andrew, of RMS Recruitment, will be walking Wainwrights Coast to Coast route from St Bees on the West Coast, ending up in Robin Hoods Bay on the East Coast, starting their journey on Sunday 6th August, in aid of PTSD Resolution. Joining them on their journey is Russel Gallagher, of CAT UK, along with various friends and colleagues on route.
The route is approximately 190 miles (306 kilometres), which Wainwright suggested “with one or two rest days, this makes the route fit into a two-week holiday” – the most popular option. However, Carole & Andrew will be attempting to complete this in just 6 days – that means over 30 miles, or approx. 64,000 steps every day!
Carole & Andrew’s expedition starts at St Bees on the West Coast, and traversing through three contrasting national parks; the wonderful Lake District with its series of beautiful lakes and
mountains, the limestone and gritstone of the Yorkshire Dales, and the heather-covered plateaux of the North York Moors, before finishing in the picturesque fishing village of Robin Hood’s Bay. As far as possible, the route uses public rights of way, permissive paths and access land, but is mostly an un-signposted long-distance footpath. In 2004 the walk was named as the second-best walk in the world.
Why Coast to Coast?
Carole & Andrew describe why they have waited until now to take on this epic challenge.
Andrew said, “One of the biggest reasons for taking on this challenge now was to raise money in memory of Owen Wason, the son of our Managing Director, Carole. My time spent in the Army, being part of Herrick 11, and having so many good friends that have been injured physically and mentally inspires me to do this challenge even more and I know the memories of the good times that we shared together will keep me going each day.”
Carole explains, “It goes without saying the reasons for doing the walk. It’s the biggest challenge that I have ever endured, as I spend most of my time in the office or car. Spending many months and years supporting Owen on his difficult journey, I am very aware of the immense need for other veterans to receive help. Every step I take, and every mile I achieve, Owen will be in my mind giving me inspiration to complete this challenge.”
In Memory of Owen Wason
Owen was a Royal Marine Commando from Darlington who was suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) following two tours of Afghanistan. Owen was just 18 years old, the youngest member of 45 Commando, when he went on his first tour of duty as part of Operation Herrick 9, a particularly “brutal” operation. Having joined the Marines straight from school, Owen was commended for his commando spirit and described as a “hoofing” soldier. Unfortunately, at the end of last year, at the age of only 26, Owen lost his battle with his PTSD. His Mam & Dad, Carole and Paul, have since set up a Just Giving page in Owens memory, raising over £6,900 to date. They wish to continue raising funds to help benefit the veterans & their families who are in need of help.
During the walk, regular updates will be posted here to keep up to date with Carole & Andrew’s progress.
What is PTSD?
PTSD – Post Traumatic Stress Disorder can effect anyone. It is an anxiety disorder caused by very stressful, frightening or distressing events. Our Military men and women see so many awful things whilst serving their country. We automatically recognise that those who have lost limbs or physical scares will need support, rehabilitation and time to recover. Those that are mentally scared have symptoms that are not recognised quickly enough and these men and women often suffer in silence.
Why is PTSD a problem?
Anger and depression. Nightmares and substance abuse. Family breakdown and even suicide. The symptoms of military PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) wreck lives.
One in four homeless people is a former member of the armed services. Over 20,000 veterans are in jail or on probation. Treatment is available, but it’s often inappropriate, there are long waiting lists, and therapy can extend over months or even years.
Treatment is often unsuitable because veterans, reservists and dependants, are expected to describe harrowing events in detail, in group therapy sessions with civilians.
PTSD Resolution’s programme is different. It is exclusively for veterans and involves an average of just four one-hour sessions. Treatment is on a one-to-one, out-patient basis with a qualified therapist. It is proven to work, backed by a successful three-year pilot project.
Veterans are then able to move on to treatment for other problems, such as addiction and homelessness.
Who are PTSD Resolution?
PTSD Resolution is an independent UK Charity currently helping Veterans, Reservists and their Families who are struggling to reintegrate into a normal work and family life because of combat related stress, transitional distress and trauma suffered during service in the armed forces. PTSD Resolution help those that other services do not reach or cannot help, namely ex-service men and women with mental health problems after serving in the UK armed forces. Programmes offered by PTSD Resolution are complementary to the work of other services’ charities that work to resolve mental health issues in ex-servicemen and women.