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Memory Walks across GVA offices

Monday, 30 October 2017

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Throughout September and October, GVA staff across the UK took part in organized walks and hikes to unite against dementia and raise both money and awareness for the Alzheimer’s Society. Below are photos and recaps from the experiences, which raised more than £32,000 including matched donations for the Alzheimer’s Society and Alzheimer Scotland.

London Gresham Street - 7 September

London Gresham Street

The London City office went on an exciting walking tour around Shoreditch with an excellent guide, Henri. Through visiting the lesser known streets and areas, they learnt about what is arguably London’s trendiest neighbourhood and its history of radical politics and modern art, and spotted some of Banksy’s artwork in the process. This tour was in partnership with unseen tours, a social enterprise that works with homeless, ex-homeless and vulnerably housed Londoners. A fantastic experience that allowed GVA to support two causes from this 1.5hour walk.

Glasgow - 11 September

Glasgow

Members of the Glasgow office took to the streets in matching purple t-shirts in aid of Alzheimer Scotland. They completed a 5K walking along the River Clyde and into Glasgow Green, one of the sites of the 2014 Commonwealth Games It was an uncharacteristically sunny September day in Glasgow and everyone was glad to make the most of it, while raising money and awareness for a fantastic cause.

Leeds and Newcastle - 22 September

Leeds and Newcastle

The GVA Leeds and Newcastle offices came together with DLA Piper to complete a 20 mile hike around the Yorkshire Dales. This included an overnight stay at Grassington bunk barn with home cooked dinner, as well an extended visit to the pub in Grassington village. Come the next morning, sausage butties were served for breakfast and team were off before 8am, heading down a track and over the river on the way across the fields. The sun was shining throughout the day and they were greeted by an office volunteer at the half way point with hot drinks and Jaffa cakes. They were unable to climb Simon’s Seat due to shooting season being under way but at least Barden Moor was accomplished!

London West End - 29 September

London West End

The London Berkeley Square office took part in a 25km Memory Walk along the Thames Path, travelling from Maidenhead to Henley. The team set off on a Friday morning and were faced with various hurdles along the way, including but not limited to; large swans, white deer, alluring houses, even more alluring public houses, overly friendly dogs and extraordinarily large cowpats. Powering on, they managed to complete the challenge in just less than seven hours, including stops for lunch and a couple of much needed half time oranges.

Manchester – 30 September

GVA’s Manchester office joined an Alzheimer’s Society organized 8km memory walk at Heaton Park. To support the team that took part, a casual clothes day was run in the office the week before to help contribute to their fundraising.

Bristol and Cardiff - 6 October

Bristol and Cardiff

GVA’s Bristol and Cardiff office braved a 30km hike, including numerous peaks and almost 1,500 metres of ascent. This was a challenge walk that replicated in part of the famous ‘Fan dance’, a Special Forces selection march over the Brecon Beacons, although they were excused the need to carry the requisite 30kg pack. The dramatic northern escarpment of the Beacons was toying with the clouds as they climbed from the road head, but these lifted near the first top with a glorious day spent in the sun. The climb continued with various summit peaks, sometimes gently and at times steep enough for some to take the excuse to “stop and admire the view” as those more agile and athletic and with youth on their side raced ahead to the next summit top.

Finally, fruit, cakes, biscuit and tea were provided at the last feed station high up on a mountain road rendezvous manned by two office volunteers. The team set off again on their final stretch on weary legs with the sun now almost gone. With dusk creeping they descended down the long sinuous ridge of Tor y Foel to destination’s end at the Coach & Horses pub for a welcome drink and reminiscence.