A team of Gurkha soldiers is aiming to run the equivalent length of the UK to help raise funds for an NHS hospital trust.
C (Mogaung) Company of First Battalion The Royal Gurkha Rifles, are attempting to run 1956 kilometres, which equates to 815 laps of their camp, to raise £3,000 for the William Harvey Hospital in Ashford, Kent.
It also represents the distance between the two furthest points on the UK mainland – Land’s End and John O’Groats.
Nearly half of the Folkestone-based soldiers’ wives are nurses and ‘key workers’ at the hospital and are on the frontline of the nation’s fight against the coronavirus.
Sergeant Indra Gurung and Corporal Naresh Rai set up the fundraiser which started on 11 May.
Sergeant Gurung said: “We have witnessed our NHS Staff providing 24/7 comprehensive care while putting themselves at higher risk of developing the virus and would like to express our huge thank you to all the NHS staff throughout the nation.
They are fantastic, and are working selflessly throughout the pandemic to keep us safe.
“We know how hard it is, both physically and mentally, for people to cope with this situation, and we have been motivated by this hardship to run the equivalent length of the UK from Land’s End to John O’ Groats in support of this amazing hard work.”
Corporal Rai added: “Our aim is to raise as much money as possible for our local NHS Trust to show our appreciation for their outstanding work during this pandemic.”
Troops are taking it in turns to run laps day and night, representing the ‘round the clock’ care being provided by NHS staff.
East Kent Hospitals’ Chief Operating Officer, Lee Martin said: ‘We are delighted to have the support of our local Royal Gurkha Rifles Regiment in raising funds for East Kent Hospitals Charity’s Helping Your Hospitals Appeal.
“The funds raised will be used to provide additional support for staff wellbeing at the William Harvey Hospital, during the coronavirus outbreak."
Cover image: British Army.