AN ex-serviceman is gearing up for a mammoth walking challenge to back a charity that supports heroes fighting for their country.
David Smedley will walk the 110-mile Cleveland Way next month in aid of the Help for Heroes charity, carrying his 35lb hiking bag containing a tent and food supplies.
David, 23, is aiming to complete the gruelling challenge from Helmsley to Filey in five days and he will be alone for the majority of the trek.
David said: “I am looking forward to it and I have been doing a lot of training.
“I have done the odd thing for charity before but nothing on this scale.
“The walk will be as much a mental as physical challenge, but I have been gearing up for this for about six weeks.
“I have been watching the Our War television series, which features soldiers out in Afghanistan, and I decided I wanted to raise money for the charity.
“It is a great cause and I am hoping to raise about £1,000 in total.”
Help for Heroes is a national charity that provides help and support to injured servicemen and women and it is a cause close to his heart.
In 2008, David spent six months in the Royal Navy in Portsmouth as a warfare specialist. He left after deciding it wasn’t for him.
After setting up his own business, Smedley’s Building Services, he had a change of heart and will rejoin the Navy later this year after passing his entry exams.
David, of Belmont Gardens, Hartlepool, added: “I had been in the Navy for a short time in 2008 but at the time I thought it was the wrong career choice.
“I have since come to realise that it is what I want to do and I cannot wait to go back. I am now just waiting for a start date.”
David will be setting off on Monday, July 25, and he will be camping for four nights.
Ian Glass, who owns Muscle World Gym, in Andrew Street, Hartlepool, has provided David with his food and vitamin rations and he has also agreed to walk with him on the final day of the challenge.
David also thanked Altered Images, in Hartlepool, for supplying him with sponsored T-shirts.
To sponsor David visit his website at www.bemycharity.com/110milesmedley