Meet the friends who are gearing up to walk 100 miles for charity

A group of friends are getting set to walk 100 miles in a bid to raise funds for causes close to their hearts.

Wednesday, 16th January 2019, 5:00 am
100 mile walkers (left to right) Krissy Haikney, John Kelly and Dave Potter. Picture by FRANK REID

Dave Potter, 41, Kris Haikney, 23, and John Kelly, 37, will be walking the impressive distance back to Sunderland in the hopes of raising £2,000 for three charities.

The friends, regulars at Sunderland venue Sinatra’s, will be donating the cash raised to Veterans In Crisis Sunderland, Wear Recovery and the Freeman Hospital in Newcastle’s cancer care unit.

This will be their second charity challenge, having taking on a 32 mile walk over 11 hours on Christmas Day, which raised £1,500 for the children’s ward at Sunderland Royal Hospital.

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Their latest challenge will kick off on Tuesday, April 2, when the trio will be dropped off somewhere 100 miles away from Sunderland with the aim to make it back home on foot.

Dave, from Hendon, believes the effort will take them three days to complete, with the group planning to sleep rough along the way in a bid to ensure every penny raised goes to their chosen causes.

Dad-of-three Dave, said: “I had family in the army so I wanted to support Veterans In Crisis Sunderland.
“Kris lost his sister, Krissy Haikney, two years ago through drink addiction, so he wanted to support Wear Recovery .

“And John has battled cancer so he wanted to support the Freeman’s cancer care unit.

“We did a 32 mile walking challenge on Christmas Day for Sunderland Royal where we walked from the hospital covering the likes of South Shields, Jarrow, Heworth, Easington, Penshaw and then back to the hospital.

“We are also planning another challenge in December which will be from Land’s End to John O’Groats on bikes.”

In the run up to the walking challenge the group are training six days a week at Fusion 2000 gym on Roker Avenue in Sunderland, which is allowing them to train for free for the charity effort.

The team has also bee sponsored by a host of local businesses who have provided raffle prizes and clothing.

In the coming weeks a raffle will be held with the winner getting to choose where the group set off from on their 100 mile trek.

John added: “I had treatment at the Freeman’s cancer care unit and what they do at that hospital is amazing, so I just wanted to do this challenge to support them.

“I am really looking forward to it.”