Hitchhiking Mansfield teachers give Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice a lift

TWO teachers are hoping to hitchhike their way down the length of the country to raise money for Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice.

Mansfield’s Crescent Primary School headteacher Vic Wilkinson and head of creative arts at Swanwick Hall School and Technology College, Martin Picker, are joining forces to test the ‘rule of thumb’ and cadge a lift from John O’ Groats to Land’s End.

“The route we take will be down to fate and the generosity of those who are willing to offer us a lift,” explained Vic. “The world record is just over 17 hours but we are anticipating it taking anywhere between two and four days.”

It’s not the first time these intrepid teachers have put their hitchhiking skills to the test. They once travelled the hard road of hitching from Paris to the Mediterranean together in just one day.

It is hoped the 874 mile challenge will collect £2,000 in memory of Martin’s mum, who was a supporter of the South Yorkshire based charity, which provides care for seriously ill children from across the region.

“It is our pleasure to support Bluebell Wood,” added Vic. “We have the support of our pupils, staff and the community to help the charity continue its vital work. It will also be a fitting tribute to Martin’s mum.”

Vic and Martin will be leaving behind the tartan and haggis of Scotland on Sunday 1st April in search of their destination at the tip of England, where they hope to tuck into a Cornish pastie and cream tea as a reward for their efforts.

Along the way they could maybe see the fog on the Tyne, ski down Snowdonia, dip their toe in the Trent, or have tea with the Queen at Buckingham Palace, before finally arriving at their destination in the craggy seascape of Land’s End.

But which landmarks and sights they see along the way is totally in the hands of the people who stop and share their ride with the adventurous accomplices.

Sarah Champion, chief executive of Bluebell Wood is delighted with the support given to the charity, which offers care and support to children and young adults with a shortened life expectancy, both in their own homes and at the Dinnington hospice.

“It is fantastic that Vic and Martin are supporting Bluebell Wood. As we receive no statutory government funding, each and every one of our supporters really make a difference.

“I would also like to take this opportunity to offer our thanks to Gillian Picker for all her fantastic work she did for the charity. We are delighted her son Martin is carrying on fundraising in her memory.”

Sponsor Vic and Martin by clicking here or follow their progress by joining the Facebook group at www.facebook.com/groups/290766600990916/294918930575683/.