More than 1,000 walkers, including 33 relay teams and 60 family groups, took part in the 2020-2021 Saffery Rotary Walk making it a record-breaking year for one of the island’s largest charity fundraising events. 

An additional £61,000 has been distributed to Guernsey’s Rotary Clubs and 14 local benefiting charities who had to wait patiently following the enforced cancelation of the Walk last year. The cheques were presented by the Walk’s Patron, His Excellency Vice Admiral Sir Ian Corder, at a presentation evening at Government House on Tuesday 14 September.

Rotarian, Simon Milsted, chair of the Walk’s organising committee said: “Our aim was to make this year’s Walk bigger and better than ever before and I’m thrilled that we did just that. It’s all thanks to the amazing local community who continue to support the event year after year by taking on the epic 39-mile challenge and raising thousands of pounds for fantastic local charities in the process.

“We recognise that the last two years have been extremely challenging for everyone due to the pandemic, so it meant a huge amount to be able to hold the event on the 4th of June and that all our Walkers embraced the Guernsey Together spirit to help make it such a success. 

“This event wouldn’t be possible if it wasn’t for the continued, steadfast sponsorship from Saffery Champness so we’re extremely grateful to them and to everyone who helps make this event happen.” 

A number of special awards were given out during the presentation evening at Government House. 

Eleven-year-old Freddie Furley won the award for the youngest Walker to complete the route and 74-year-old Christopher Lowe won the oldest Walker award.

James Stewart won the award for the most individual sponsorship raised – a fantastic £12,000. The PG Coast Busterswon the award for most money raised by a team. 

The Peter Walker award for special achievement was presented to Sam Winterflood after he overcame his personal challenges with autism and epilepsy to take part in the event.

This year’s Saffery Selfie competition was won by Kirsty and Freddie Furley for their sunrise photograph which perfectly captured Guernsey in all its glory. They won an Apple Watch Series 6 and a framed photo of their winning selfie.

Amelia Holden won the stay at the Hotel de Havelet and £50 Copenhagen Bar & Grill voucher having been successful in the prize draw. 

Sir Ian Corder was also presented with a framed special edition Saffery Rotary Walk t-shirt to commemorate him having walked the entire 39 miles in each of his 5 years in which he has been patron of the walk. Sir Ian will be leaving the role of Lieutenant-Governor when his term of office ends on 30 November 2021. 

In all more than 13,000 people have taken part in the Walk over the last 24 years raising more than £850,000 for local charities. 

Lisa Vizia, director at Saffery Champness and member of the organising committee, said: “We are really proud to sponsor Guernsey’s round-island Walk and one of the island’s largest annual charity fundraising events. 

“The Walk has always been a well-loved community event but this year it was particularly poignant to see everyone walking together again in aid of so many brilliant charitable causes. Thank you to everyone who helped make the Walk such an inspiring and memorable day.”

Charities that received funding from the 2020-2021 Saffery Rotary Walk in 2021:

  • 3rd Guernsey Scout Group – £1,000 for new tents
  • ACTIVE – £600 for hire costs
  • Guernsey Swimming Club – £4,200 for new equipment
  • Guernsey Welfare Service – £5,000 for storage space
  • Guernsey Voluntary Service – £8,500 for a new Meals on Wheels car
  • Guernsey Marlins Special – £2,000 for travel costs to compete in the UK and Jersey
  • Guernsey Multiple Myeloma Support – £5,000 for educational sessions for health professionals
  • Health Connections – £3,500 for a talking café project
  • Humankind – £3,500 for staff training
  • Les Bourgs Hospice – £6,900 for TV and sound equipment
  • Relate – £3,000 for software installation and training
  • St Martin’s Primary School – £3,000 for furniture for a tranquillity corner
  • The Set Sail Trust – £2,500 for educational trip to Herm
  • The Inner Wheel Club of Guernsey – £2,500 to be applied to their benevolent work in the Bailiwick

9 further charities received £17,500 between them in 2020 despite the Walk being cancelled due to the COVID pandemic. This was thanks to the generosity of registered walkers, corporate sponsors Saffery Champness, who honoured their commitments to the Walk, and additional donations from local businesses. 

The next Saffery Rotary Walk takes place on 11 June 2022. Applications for funding can be made by any locally registered charity in need of financial support for a specific project or initiative.