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Heathrow hub hike

Andy and the team at Heathrow

Andy Sayers is a Chief Technician in the RAF. Andy is planning a hike from Heathrow to Brize Norton, to raise money for charity. Andy tells us more in this blog.

I have been in the RAF for over 26 years (man and boy) and I currently work for AirTanker Services based at RAF Brize Norton. Eight Voyager Engineers have been working at the Virgin Atlantic Hangar at London Heathrow for the last ten months.

We were placed there by the RAF as part of our training to become licensed aircraft engineers. We are returning to start work for real on our Voyager aircraft back at RAF Brize Norton in March 2013.

To mark this momentous occasion we have decided to undertake a charity event and so the Heathrow Hub Hike will take place from 18 to 20 March 2013.

A random conversation, while out walking with our dog, led me to wonder if it was possible to walk from Heathrow to Brize Norton. I discussed it with my fellow engineers and we decided to organise a charity walk. We chose two charities one with relevance to the RAF and one with close links to the staff at Virgin Atlantic.

A few years ago, a friend of the family in Carterton was struck down with a brain haemorrhage. As he was the main bread winner this left his wife in dire financial straits and having to arrange 24 hour care for her husband whilst still bringing up two teenage sons.

As they were both ex-RAF personnel the RAF Benevolent Fund stepped in to ensure they had a house to live in, financial stability and support so his wife and children could get their lives back on track.

Starting at Heathrow we are hiking back to RAF Brize Norton. The journey is approximately 120km which we aim to complete in three days.

We are aiming to complete 45km on each of the first two days and 30km on day three. Using an Ordnance Survey map we shall follow the Thames path and other major public footpaths, bridleways and country lanes until we get back to Brize. Quite an adventure!

Andy Sayers

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