Gallery: Pirates descend on Ipswich for St Elizabeth Hospice’s Midnight Walk

Walkers get ready to set off from Ipswich Town Football Club on the St Elizabeth Hospice Midnight Wa

Walkers get ready to set off from Ipswich Town Football Club on the St Elizabeth Hospice Midnight Walk.

Hundreds of fundraising pirates raided the darkened streets of Ipswich for the town’s ninth Midnight Walk in aid of St Elizabeth Hospice.

Walkers get ready to set off from Ipswich Town Football Club on the St Elizabeth Hospice Midnight Wa

Walkers get ready to set off from Ipswich Town Football Club on the St Elizabeth Hospice Midnight Walk.

Portman Road filled with a different type of supporter on Saturday as runners and walkers gathered for the start of the overnight race.

Hospice staff praised the “amazing” effort of runners, who will have raised an estimated £150,000 for the charity by the time all sponsorship is drawn in.

More than 1,400 people ranging in age from 13 to 70 took on the five, eight or 13 mile routes, which all passed through the Foxhall Road hospice, allowing participants to hang a personalised tag on the Tree of Remembrance for a loved one.

Event organiser, Gavin Lamb said: “It was a fantastic night and the atmosphere was electric.


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“It is always wonderful to see so many people unite for one night to walk or run together, to raise vital funds for the hospice.

“Many of them have been touched by hospice care and know from personal experience how the money raised from events like the Midnight Walk make such a difference to our patients and their families and carers.”

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Before they set off, hospice patient, Maxine Gould gave a speech about how the charity’s support helped people like her to live life to the full, with Mr Lamb adding: “There was not a dry eye in the football ground.”

Christina Wise, of Ipswich, walked the 13 mile route in memory of her husband Andy, who was cared for by St Elizabeth Hospice last year.

Walking with 10 others to form ‘Andy’s Army’, Mrs Wise said: “We’ve raised several hundred between us which will go towards boosting Andy’s tribute fund which currently stands at more than £20,000.”

There was plenty of entertainment to help participants limber up before the race, including wheel gymnasts, the Torwood Wheelers, and leading the pirate-themed warm-up were Just Jay Dance Group – joined by Town 102 DJ’s Tony Horton and Wayne Bavin, and mascot, Cheeko the Monkey.

Mr Lamb thanked the 160 volunteers who gave their time freely between 8pm on Saturday and 6am the following day to make the event a success.

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