No charity walk this year says Bexhill Rotary

The annual charity walk organised by the Rotary Club of Bexhill will not be held this year.

The walk had become one of the main events in the club’s year and an important fundraiser for the many local charities which took part.

The club would invite clubs and organisations to take part and took care of all the details - such as marking out three routes, leaving from St Richard’s catholic college in Bexhill, to suit varying levels of energy.

All walkers had to do was find sponsorship and raise awareness of their aims and then choose between the two mile seafront stroll, the seven mile country walk or the 15 mile round trip to Battle.

Rotary spokesman Roger Batey said: “No, we will not be running the walk this year partly because the Bexhill-Hastings link road works cut across our route. We’re concentrating our efforts on other projects such as Ale & Arty and the annual Golf Tournament at Cooden Beach Golf Club in June. Hopefully, we’ll be able to stage the walk again in future years.

“We have put a lot of work into this event over the years but in recent years the number of walkers and charities taking part has been dwindling and it was felt that we should give it a rest for the time being, especially as the link road works cut across the course. This decision wasn’t taken lightly, it was discussed at length at a business meeting several weeks ago and was put to a vote by all the club members. It was not a unanimous decision but it was the ‘nos’ that exceeded the ‘yesses.’

Homecall manager Maureen Daley commented: ‘Homecall’s walkers will be so disappointed to hear that the Rotary walk will not be taking place this year but looking to the future we hope that the walk will be resumed perhaps next year’.

Rotary walk stalwart and former Observer deputy editor John Dowling added: “The Rotary Community Charity walk was the inspired idea of Rotarians Harold Lawrence and Peter Mitchell-Davis in the light of the money they had raised by doing the 650-mile South West Coastal Path.

“Over the years, this highly-enjoyable annual event has enabled walkers to raise thousands of pounds for the charities of their choice.

“While many will mourn its loss, we have to acknowledge that each event took many hours of hard work to organise, and Ale and Arty offers the club the ideal means to fund-raise for Rotary’s charitable causes.”