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Army Veteran Mark Newton at Woody Bay

Mark Newton, a disabled British Army veteran, is travelling all around the British coastline (as well as many of the islands - including Lundy) to raise money for a number of charities - on a mobility scooter! The scooter is towing a sizeable trailer, and he is accompanied by Missy and Smudge, his two well-travelled cats.

Mark and his Mobility Scooter, with "Smudge" (standing) and "Missy" at Woody Bay

On Monday 21st July - day 470 of his trip - Mark arrived at Woody Bay for a breakfast of tea and toast, courtesy of Judy Williams. 

Mark took the opportunity to do some maintenance on his scooter in the shade of the trees at Woody Bay.

Warned in advance that he was arriving some time during the day, the team at Woody Bay had arranged a bit of a surprise for Mark, and he was invited to join Driver Graham Varney and Fireman Julian Sinclair on the footplate of AXE - a loco which, like him, is a time-served military veteran.


2014-07-21_1280x720.mp4 from Mark Newton on Vimeo.

After his trip Judy also provided lunch for Mark, and he then left Woody Bay for his next destination, the Sunny Lyn caravan site at Lynbridge.

Serving as a tank driver with The Queen's Dragoon Guards (QDG - nicknamed The Welsh Cavalry), Mark was injured in 1991. By 2009, his condition had deteriorated to the point where walking was painfully difficult. He contacted The Soldiers' Sailors' and Airmen's Families Association (SSAFA) who helped him to get funding for a mobility scooter. His regiment, and The Royal British Legion (RBL) came up with the money to pay for it.

After being made redundant in 2010, Mark decided to spend his time fundraising for army charities. In 2011 He completed his Around Wales Challenge, covering 1,452.52 miles, and attempted to set the record for the longest distance travelled on a mobility scooter in 24 hours, raising just over £9,000 for QDG, Help for Heroes (HfH) and RBL.

Mark's current 14-month plus challenge is his biggest yet as he travels around coast of Britain on his mobility scooter raising funds for QDG, HfH,RBL, SSAFA and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

He is funding the trip from his War Pension - and the generosity of the British people and businesses. He sleeps in a trailer attached to the scooter and covers 20-30 miles a day.

To read more about Mark and his challenge, see his website and his Facebook page.

Photos: top; Judy Williams, others; Mark Newton

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