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Woman, 76, completes epic walk to help church hit by lead thefts

PUBLISHED: 08:55 06 October 2020 | UPDATED: 08:55 06 October 2020

Rosemary Jewers, right, and her walking companion Rina Adams traced the ancient Roman route from Colchester all the way up to the North Norfolk coast over a period of eight days. Picture: ROSEMARY JEWERS

Rosemary Jewers, right, and her walking companion Rina Adams traced the ancient Roman route from Colchester all the way up to the North Norfolk coast over a period of eight days. Picture: ROSEMARY JEWERS

Archant

A 76-year-old woman completed an epic eight-day, 90-mile trek along an ancient Roman road to raise money for a Norfolk church which was hit by lead thieves.

Rosemary Jewers lives near Abbeyfield in Colchester and only started walking again last year after several operations had left her unable to walk even a mile. Picture: ROSEMARY JEWERSRosemary Jewers lives near Abbeyfield in Colchester and only started walking again last year after several operations had left her unable to walk even a mile. Picture: ROSEMARY JEWERS

Rosemary Jewers set off on Tuesday, September 22 with her walking companion Rina Adams to traverse the length of Peddars Way – a centuries old route passed down through four generations of her family.

Rosemary, who lives near Abbey Fields, near Colchester, has worked her way up to peak fitness to complete the challenge – despite struggling to walk even a mile last year.

The end of the route, which is roughly 90 miles, brought them out at Holme-next-the-Sea on the north-west coast of Norfolk – near Little Massingham, where Rosemary’s family are from.

“I managed to get horrible blisters all over my heels on day two but by now we are absolutely elated – although I had cramps on the first day and did have a moment where I thought ‘why am I here, this is so silly’. We’ve been on definite Roman roads and on many the cars are just speeding along, totally unaware of the history.”

Rosemary Jewers in Woolpit Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNRosemary Jewers in Woolpit Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

The purpose of Rosemary’s trip, other than exploring the story handed down by her family, was to raise money for the Little Massingham Church, where she is patron - after a lead theft which will cost £150,000 to refurbish.

Her great-great-grandfather was rector to the church in 1802 and his descendants followed in his footsteps.

The total from the walk reached more than £900 for the church. She is hopeful more will be donated.

She was pleased to be able to show other elderly people that it is never too late to improve your fitness and take on a challenge like this - saying she hopes she has inspired some people to talk up exercise in some way.

Rosemary Jewers and Rina Adams walked along the Roman Roads to raise money for their church, which had lead stolen from its roof Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWNRosemary Jewers and Rina Adams walked along the Roman Roads to raise money for their church, which had lead stolen from its roof Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

While the walk was originally due to happen in April, Rosemary decided not to wait any longer and was relieved to be completing her challenge before any further Covid restrictions come in.

Lings Country Goods, Lynn Lane, Gt Massingham, King’s Lynn PE32 2HJ is accepting cash and cheque donations made payable to either Rosemary Jewers, or to Friends of St Andrew’s Church Little Massingham.

To donate online visit the Just Giving page: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/rosemary-peddars-walk


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