Inspirational Social Value Endeavours

In a remarkable display of dedication, compassion, and community spirit, Twig Supervisor David Hartup, accompanied by his son Aaron, recently completed the Walk the Wight charity hike for the sixth time. This annual event, which raises funds for the Mountbatten Hospice, saw the dynamic father-son duo joining thousands of others traverse the picturesque Isle of Wight, all for a cause close to their hearts.

David’s journey with Walk the Wight began six years ago. Each year, he laces up his trusty old trainers (6 x Walk the Wight and once round Yellowstone National Park) and steps out with unwavering determination, inspired by the vital work Mountbatten Hospice does for individuals and families facing life-limiting illnesses. For David, the walk is more than just a tradition; it’s a heartfelt mission to support a sanctuary that provides exceptional end-of-life care and comfort.

“We’re incredibly proud to be part of this event” David shared. “Every step we take is for those who need the care and support of Mountbatten Hospice. It’s an honour to walk alongside so many passionate people, all united by the same purpose.”

Aaron has grown up with this annual event, learning the values of empathy, resilience, and community service. “Walking with my dad and seeing the difference we can make together is amazing. We also have a good old moan about life for 8 hours or so – it’s great family therapy” Aaron said. “It’s a fun and meaningful way to give back.”

Recognising the importance of community engagement and charitable endeavours, Twig were thrilled to sponsor David and Aaron’s participation, underscoring our commitment to social value initiatives and dedication to fostering a culture of giving and support. “At Twig, we believe in the power of community and the impact we can make when we come together for a common cause” Twig’s MD Gary Devereaux stated. “Sponsoring David and Aaron in the Walk the Wight event aligns perfectly with our values. Their commitment to the Mountbatten Hospice is truly inspiring, and we are delighted to support them in this noble cause.”

Walk the Wight is a 26.5 mile charity walk to raise money for The Mountbatten Hospice which is situated on the Isle of Wight. The walk starts from Bembridge and ends in Alum Bay, crossing the length of the island. The walk consists of many footpaths, tracks, bridleways and roads (although its mainly offroad). Participants get to see and walk through areas they would not normally be able to, through woodland, farm fields, hills and clifftops. The views are stunning, from cliffs to castles and beaches. This year nearly 10,000 people took part.

The first section of the walk goes from Bembridge to Arreton (the first checkpoint) which is 9 miles. The second section goes from Arreton to Carisbrooke Castle (halfway check point) and is 3 miles. Then the next section is from Carisbrooke to Mottistone (third checkpoint) and is 5.5 miles. Then on from Mottistone to Freshwater Bay for 5 miles (fourth checkpoint). Then the last section along the clifftops from Freshwater Bay to Alum Bay and The Needles is 4 miles.

The reason why I walk: A Family Tragedy:

Just over seven years ago, the 5 year old niece of Aaron’s partner was walking to school with her mother and sisters. They were about to cross a road when she said “Mummy I don’t feel very well” and on saying that, she collapsed and fell to the ground. Unfortunately, she had suffered a cardiac arrest and could not be resuscitated. She died there in her mother’s arms with her sisters watching on. This had a devastating effect on the entire family and shattered their lives. This is where the Mountbatten Hospice came in. They gave the whole family amazing support and counselling, especially the small children to help them to cope and come to terms with their loss, which remains ongoing to this day. So, this is why, for the past six years, I have committed to and participated in Walking the Wight. I set out on a 26.5 mile journey across the whole length of the island to raise money for this wonderful hospice and to remember a beautiful 5 year old little girl who was so full of life and left us all so suddenly and way too early. I walk for her.

The funds raised through Walk the Wight are crucial for the Mountbatten Hospice, enabling it to provide essential services such as pain and symptom management, emotional support, and end-of-life care. Each donation helps ensure that patients and their families receive the compassionate care they deserve during some of the most challenging times in their lives.

As David and Aaron crossed the finish line, their faces beamed with pride and joy knowing they had once again contributed to a cause that makes a profound difference. Their journey exemplifies the spirit of giving and the power of community, reminding us all of the impact we can have when we walk together, hand in hand, for a better world.

Congratulations to them both on completing their sixth Walk the Wight. Together, we continue to build a compassionate community, one step at a time.

Read about dynamic duo David & Aaron and their inspirational charity walk across the Isle of Wight.