Veronica and Eddie Yarwood like a bit of a challenge. The couple from Blenkinsopp near Haltwhistle are keen walkers and they like to turn their hobby to good use.
Having walked among others St Oswald’s Way, St Cuthbert’s Way and the Coast to Coast, they plan to take on the 68 mile Border Abbey Way in aid of Minsteracres’ retreat house restoration fund.
“I love the peace and quiet at Minsteracres, and I have been coming to it for years,” explains Veronica. “I’d really like to be able to give something back.
“The lift and the new shower rooms in the retreat house have made a huge difference already, but we know that there are more updates planned and we’d like to make our contribution to them.”
Their six day circular walk at the beginning of May has taken meticulous planning. “That’s Eddie’s job. He does the logistics,” says Veronica.
He has had some experience which is paying off this time. In previous walks they stayed at the Glenbank House Hotel in Jedburgh, and used local firm First Taxis to get about. This time they plan to stay the full six days at the hotel and use the taxis to get to and from each leg of the walk.
Knowing that they were walking for a good cause, and that all the money they raise goes to the charity (they don’t even take expenses), taxi owner Ray King has been known to give them a reduced rate.
The meticulous planning extends to preparation for the walk. “It took a while to sort out the right socks and boots, but we cracked it and we’ve never had a blister,” says Eddie.
“When we buy a pair of boots we break them in at home – we never do a walk in new boots,” adds Veronica.
“We’re doing practice walks now, but we’re about four weeks behind because of the weather. We’ve had to be out in the snow and the wet to catch up. We’ll do two of the Halwhistle Challenge walks as part of our preparation.”
Although they do the walks on their own, they enjoy the chance to meet other people along the way. “You’ll often find people doing the same walks for other charities. Sometimes we’ll catch them in the evenings after a day’s walking and swap notes,” says Veronica.
The first leg of the walk with be on Saturday 30th April from Jedburgh to Hawick, “We do a steady 10 miles a day, that suits us,” says Eddie. Taking in the abbys at Melrose, Dryburgh, Jedburgh, Selkirk and Kelso, they will finish on Friday 6th May.
If you’d like to support Veronica and Eddie, please visit their my donate page https://mydonate.bt.com/events/theyarwoodswalk/294460