40 miles for 40th birthday

Dear AONB team

At the start of 2013 I was trying to think of a way to celebrate my 40th birthday on 20th September, when I came across the article in the local paper about East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty celebrating 50 years and the challenge to walk the length of the East Devon Way during the year. When I discovered that the route was 40 miles long it seemed a perfect way to mark my birthday too.

I decided (as suggested on the website) to divide the walk into 6 stages of similar length (6-7 miles long) and then to fix 6 dates between April and my birthday weekend in September to complete them (see the list of dates below);

Sunday 28th April – Exmouth to Lympstone Common
Sunday 2nd June – Across the Commons
Sunday 30th June – Commons to Sidbury
Sunday 21st July – Sidbury to Farway
Sunday 1st September – Farway to Musbury
Sunday 22nd September – Musbury to Lyme Regis

I asked my dad and my son to join me for all the stages, and then sent out a letter to other friends and family inviting them to join me on one or more stages if they were able to. The three of us successfully completed all the stages, and in total were joined by 20 other people and 3 dogs! I’ve enclosed our three challenge forms so that we can receive our certificates.

The highlight for my son James was being greeted by a herd of donkeys as we walked up to Fire Beacon Hill.

Kind regards, Sarah Williams