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Walk of Life 2014 photos

The annual walk along the Kennet and Avon canal saw fundraisers walking nine, 12 or 21 miles along the towpath from Devises and through Bradford-on-Avon to Bath.

The event is organised by RUH’s charity the Forever Friends Appeal, to raise money for the hospital’s new cancer care centre.

Forever Friends Appeal head of fundraising Tim Hobbs said: “We have around 300 walkers this year, which is excellent. We’re delighted it’s grown in size and popularity as a fundraising event.

Mr Hobbs said that the seventh year of the walk is the biggest yet, and the team are hoping to surpass last year’s fundraising total of £38,000.

The Walk of Life began in 2008 in memory of fundraiser Vanessa Kyte, who died in 2007 after a seven-year battle with cancer.

Her sister Nicola Noble, who led the walk this year, is determined to help turn Vanessa’s dream of a new cancer centre at the RUH into a reality.

Mrs Noble said: “It’s been absolutely amazing. It’s quite overwhelming, this all started from a little idea and it’s getting bigger every year.

“Over the years we’ve raised for lots of different equipment at the RUH. But my last promise to Vanessa was to have her name above one of the doors of the new cancer unit.

“I’ve spoken to a lot of people with incredible memories and incredible, heartfelt stories and it makes you realise why we do it.”

This year the walk was sponsored by Kier Construction, who are tasked with developing and building the RUH’s new cancer centre.

Director David Snell said: “We are really proud to be involved with the Walk of Life.”

Mr Snell, who cheered on walkers between Bradford-on-Avon and Bath from his barge Penelope, said many of the company’s staff were involved with the walk on the day.

Mr Hobbs added: “We’re delighted that the event has had really good support this year, aided by the wonderful weather. Everyone has seemed to really enjoy it.”

Walker Meg Brown, who joined with a team from Withy King as part of their summer of sport challenge, said she found the walk difficult but worth it in the end.

She said: “I wanted to challenge myself and do something good for charity.

“I think everyone was impressed I managed to do it. It was really hard work. I’ve never been in so much pain.”

You can also see the photos on our Facebook page here

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