AN intrepid couple who work for the Welsh Ambulance Service have taken the final steps on their 298-mile Cambrian Way charity hike.
Arriving at a sunny Conwy Castle at lunchtime yesterday, after setting off from Cardiff Castle on 01 September, Kevin and Cath O’Connor have hiked up mountains, along ridges, through bogs and even crossed rivers on their way to the finish line.
Originally hoping to raise £5,000 and awareness, the pair who are based in Bargoed have so far raised more than £7,300 for The Ambulance Staff Charity (TASC) on their JustGiving page.
Carrying all their own kit and wild camping along the way, the pair have been well supported online and had kind friends meet them along the way to top them up with essential supplies.
On reaching the finish line in Conwy today, a jubilant Kevin said: “We did this to raise awareness of the issues that ambulance staff face, especially now in the Covid-19 climate.
“We’re thrilled we made it all the way.
“It’s been very tough and our colleagues in the ambulance services across the UK were never far from our thoughts, helping get us through the harder days.”
Cath added: “We want to thank everybody who has supported us and everyone who donated to the cause, you’re all brilliant.
“As hard as it has been, we don’t want it to end really, but we’ll be back in work very soon.”
Welsh Ambulance Service Chief Executive Jason Killens and a group of colleagues were there to greet them.
Jason said: “We are so proud of Kevin and Cath for taking on this huge physical and mental challenge to support their colleagues and the issues they face.
“They have done incredibly well and I know many staff have enjoyed following the highs and lows of their journey on social media.
“In what is a testing period for ambulance staff across the country, they have shown incredible resilience and compassion, and we applaud them for that.”
To look back at the pair’s epic journey check out their Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/oconnorhike2020 or to make a donation visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/catherine-oconnor4.