Sunday, May 11

Keswick to Barrow 08

We had the annual Keswick to Barrow walk on Saturday and again it seemed to be the biggest, best organized event yet. It always amazes me to see people arriving back after actually running the whole forty mile route. One tired walker I picked up later in the day had been to watch Barrow's triumph at the soccer match down in Burton and had not arrived home until 2am, and then had to rise at 4am for the start of the huge hike. He told me several folk had done this, wow what heroes they must be. What puzzles me is why the occasion doesn't seem to get more nationwide publicity, when you see the coverage given to events such as the London marathon, which at 26.22 miles is by comparison a stroll in the park. This hugely popular event brings in folk from far and wide, with local hotels all full and businesses benefiting by the cash the walkers spend. Maybe after the recent local elections some of the keen new faces will hopefully push to get the event promoted further afield. Many folk I took to cheer the walkers on told me "the atmosphere is fantastic for the crowd watching as well" so maybe it should also be promoted as a spectator event. Pity about the lack of a proper taxi pickup point again, it was a struggle to get anywhere near the finish point and the exhausted entrants had to walk even further to be collected.
” The Keswick to Barrow Walk is a 40 mile sponsored stroll through some of the country’s finest landscapes. The route starts on the southern side of the Lake District town of Keswick and winds its way through some of the most beautiful scenery to the Victorian town of Barrow in Furness on the coast of the Irish Sea.!
The idea of walking from Keswick to Barrow originated in 1966 as a result of a statement made by the late US President, John F Kennedy to the effect that "every American should be capable of walking 50 miles a day". At this time the first Polaris Submarine - HMS Resolution was being built at the shipyard in Barrow and several American experts were resident in the area assisting with the project.
With the idea now conceived, plans were soon under way to organise a walk and build relationships with the crew of the submarine and the workers at the then ‘Vickers’ shipyard. The initiative was taken by the Installation Manager (Submarines) to formally challenge the Commanding Officer of HMS Resolution to form a team and walk from Keswick to Barrow on 1st April 1967.”

4 comments:

Deryk said...

A couple of my friends did it, big respect to them, amazing achievement.

Bet today's Americans (the stereotype anyway) wouldn't walk half a mile, never mind 50...

Bob said...

deryk: Yep heroes every on of them.

Anonymous said...

the marathon is 26 miles

Bob said...

anon: cheers I should have done better research eh! Now amended.