Four friends from Stansfield area to walk for good causes

Lucie Riches, Jane Ballard, Mary Evans, Leigh Sage ANL-150204-161953001
Lucie Riches, Jane Ballard, Mary Evans, Leigh Sage ANL-150204-161953001
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Four friends from West Suffolk are putting their best foot forward as they train to walk 100km in 24 hours.

The quartet, Jane Ballard, Mary Evans, Lucie Riches and Leigh Sage, who are taking on the London-Brighton challenge in late May, have all lived in and around Stansfield and have named their fund-raising team Stansfield Striders.

Mrs Evans, Suffolk County Councillor for Clare, said: “When Lucie first suggested the walk it did seem like a bonkers and impossible challenge.Lucie, Leigh and I all walk our dogs each day and Jane and Leigh have done the Coast to Coast and Stour Valley walks but this is so much tougher. However, we have been meeting up at weekends to walk further and further. On our latest training walk we did 15 miles in under five hours including various stops to check our route and retrace our steps. So the challenge though daunting feels achievable.”

The team need to raise £500 each and they are walking to raise money for three different charities.

Ms Riches is walking in aid of Sarcoma UK; Mrs Ballard, manager of the Suffolk West Citizens Advice Bureau is raising money for CAB while Mrs Evans and Mrs Sage are supporting St Nicholas Hospice Care. Mrs Ballard said: “As a champion of the Citizens Advice Bureau for over 20 years, I want to help ensure that we continue to be able to provide free information, advice and advocacy for all who need our service, especially in these challenging times.”

Ms Riches said: “Raising money for research into preventing sarcomas is a cause close to my heart and will inspire me to keep going when my legs start to tire.”

Mrs Sage added, “I like a challenge and I am keen to raise money for St Nicholas Hospice because I admire the help and support that they give to local people and their families.”

They hope to boost their fund-raising at a car boot sale on May 4 inMildenhall. For donations to their car boot sale, to donate or to follow their story, visit: