A Sussex man, who lost his wife through cervical cancer, has raised more than £65,000 towards cancer research following a year-long coastal walk.
Laurence Carter from Seaford will soon be arriving back in the town, after spending 12 months walking more than 4,200 miles around the entire coast of England and Wales.
The 58-year-old’s wife, Melitta, lost her battle in 2015, and while walking his dogs along the beach the idea of a journey to honour her memory came to him.
Laurence said Melitta would be proud of his achievements:
“If she had been with me it would’ve taken quite a bit longer because she just loved nature, so she would have been photographing the birds and the plants and everything – I often think about that actually.”
The number of women having cervical screenings is at a 20-year low, according to Cancer Research UK, so it’s not just cash Laurence is raising – it’s awareness too.
He told More Radio:
“A couple of days ago I arrived at a place, a lady opened the door to host me, and she said ‘because of you I’ve just booked my screening test – I’ve been holding it off on it for a few months’.
“That is the kind of thing that just completely made my day.
“Although this is a disease that obviously affects women, we’re all responsible for ending it.
“We could eliminate the disease by 2035 if we just step up the efforts on screening.
“We’re all human, we all need reminders – just ask the woman in your life if she’s up to date with screening.”
Laurence’s walk is due to finish near to Seaford’s Martello Tower at 12pm on Sunday 23 June.
Cancer Research UK will be holding an event to celebrate his mammoth achievement.