July 24 2014 Latest news:
Monday, July 14, 2014
For some, charity fundraising presents an opportunity to couple giving with volunteering in Tanzania or the trip of a lifetime to Central America.
But not for Craig Rowley from Chadwell Heath. Three days and nearly 20 separate journeys is what it will take for him and four friends to complete their public bus tour of England.
The 27-year-old, who calls Romford his home town, sets off with his pals from Brighton next Wednesday, before passing through Tunbridge Wells, London, Milton Keynes, Nottingham and Newcastle on their way to Berwick-upon-Tweed - using only local bus routes.
“It was something that came to me before I thought about doing it for charity,” said Craig.
“It was just turning in my brain - I was thinking: can you get from the bottom of the country to the top on only local buses?
“And I wanted to do something a bit different - not just a marathon.”
Like many charity fundraisers, his has an emotional significance. Craig’s charity of choice is Pancreatic Cancer UK, an organisation working to improve survival rates for those living with the disease, which sadly affects his terminally ill mother Audrey, 67.
And his quirky fundraising plan - which the IT technician thinks has never been attempted before - has certainly struck a chord.
So far more than £2,200 has been raised. The target was just £1,000.
“I’m really excited - it’ll be a great lot of fun,” Craig said.
“It will be different, and we’ll get to go through some interesting areas.
And they’ll have plenty of time to take it in - on two of the days, the group expect to be on buses almost solidly between 5.30am and 11pm.
“I’ve no idea what we’lll do yet,” Craig added.
“We’ll probably take a charity bucket and we’ve all had t-shirts made.
“I imagine we’ll be taking an iPad and some movies to watch!”