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Last Updated:  Monday, 7 April, 2003, 09:38 GMT 10:38 UK
Botham walks valleys for hospital
Ian Botham
Ian Botham will start the walk on October 3
Cricket legend Ian Botham is to walk the south Wales valleys to raise more funds for the Children's Hospital for Wales.

The former England all-rounder raised nearly 1m for the Noah's Ark Appeal when he trekked from Machynlleth to Cardiff in the spring of 2002.

At the time he said it would be his swansong from charity walking having already raised more than 5m for good causes after completing 4,000 miles and 210 days on the road.

But although the Noah's Ark Appeal reached its initial 5m target earlier this year to pay for the building work, another 1.5 is needed to equip it.

This is an incredible gesture by Ian, Kathy and the crew
Appeal chairman G Stanley Thomas

Now Botham has said he is ready to put his walking boots back on as he had received such a good reception in Wales last year.

"When I left Machynlleth last April I really believed I was setting out to do my last ever walk," he said on Monday.

"But the reception we had from the people of Wales was overwhelming.

"The new hospital is now under way with work on site starting last week.

"The appeal needs to raise a further 1.5m to provide state-of-the-art equipment for the new hospital.

"So what better way to help than to walk through some of the parts of Wales we did not reach last year"?

He will set out from Chepstow on 3 October and over the following nine days visit most of the major towns in south west Wales in a 210-mile trek ending in Newport.

Chairman of the Noah's Ark Appeal, G Stanley Thomas, said, "This is an incredible gesture by Ian, Kathy and the crew.

"When I suggested the first walk for the appeal, I never dreamed that Ian might do it again.

"I know how much the people of the valleys will be looking forward to welcoming him through their towns and villages."

    Botham's Route
  • 3 October - Chepstow to Monmouth. Passing through: Tintern
  • 4 October - Monmouth - Abergavenny. Passing through: Usk and Raglan (Old Road)
  • 5 October - Abergavenny to Ebbw Vale. Passing through: Pontypool, Abersychan, Blaenavon and Brynmawr
  • 6 October - Ebbw Vale to Merthyr Tydfil. Passing through: Tredegar, Rhymney, New Tredegar, Bargoed, Gelligaer, Treharris, Merthyr Vale, Aberfan, Troedyrhiw and Pentrebach
  • 7 October - Merthyr Tydfil to Rhondda Heritage Park. Passing though: Aberdare, Mountain Ash, Abercynon, Cilfynydd and Pontypridd
  • 8 October - Rhondda Heritage Park to Pontyclun. Passing through: Porth, Trealaw, Treorchy, Tonypandy, Tonyrefail, and Llanharan
  • 9 October - Pontyclun to Caerphilly. Passing though: Miskin, Radyr, Morganstown, Taffs Well, Tonteg, Pontypridd, Rhydyfelin and Nantgarw
  • 10 October - Caerphilly to Cwmbran. Passing through: Llanbradach, Ystrad Mynach, Blackwood, Newbridge, Crumlin, Pontypool and Griffithstown
  • 11 October - Cwmbran to Newport. Passing through: Ponthir and Caerleon

    Ian Botham
    "The dream is for hospitals in mid and north Wales"

    Botham walk raises close to 1m
    13 May 02  |  Wales

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