Emma Chaz and Sam’s Epic Isle of Wight Challenge 2018

This summer Emma and Sam decided to get to know their local countryside a little more intimately by embarking on ‘The IOW Challenge’ circumnavigating the island 3 ways, raising money for the kids at Khaya Lokukhanya in South Africa.

The challenge sounded simple: Walking, Cycling and Sailing round the IOW in 7 days. (Walking 70 miles in 4 days), cycling (via cycle route 68 in 2 days) and sailing round (in 1 day), all 3 legs to be completed by the end of the Summer holidays.

The Sailing leg was completed earlier in August sailing from Emsworth via Southsea, Ryde Cowes around the needles finishing off back at Ryde and home. A proper adventure. In Em’s own words:

The last weekend we walked all 70 miles (Sam left Em after day 1 with an injury – a blessing as it was hardcore) around the island! The weather was kind some days but brutal too and walking through history and nature was incredible. Its the way to see the island. We completed the cycling this weekend in 8.5 hours over 1.5 days back home for lunchtime! It was an epic ride and the hills seemed SO much bigger on a bike. We are feeling very accomplished and tired!

Thanks to your generosity we have raised over £2,000 for the kids at KL. Click here to share our adventure: Ems IOW Challenge

Emma & Sam x”

Seeing the Isle of Wight 'the long way'!



Race to the Stones – We did it!

Well we did it. At 7:30 am on a damp field we joined hundreds of others in various states of readiness and anxiety. We had been sent a lovely inspirational video from KL by El-Ri and the kids (thanks everyone!) and now truly had no idea what to expect but here is a summary, in lieu of a mile-by-mile account:

Conditions – could not have been better, overcast but dry all day long. Sun or rain would have turned our feet into blistered remnants.

The Course – stunning! From meandering stretches of the Thames up through wooded hills onto the spine of the famous Ridgeway, with fabulous views of Oxfordshire and Wiltshire, punctuated by dips into some picturebook village or other. All clearly marked with helpful arrows fixed pointing onwards (and onwards).

Pitstops – stationed every 10k on average, the pitstops had everything a tiring body could desire, except maybe a taxi. As well as the expected bananas and energy bars there were drinks, cakes, chocolate, plus porridge and peanut butter on toast (two of Clare’s favourite things). Add to that portaloos and water tanks for emptying and filling bladders respectively, and even folding chairs to collapse into and regenerate.

Latter Stages – After halfway was uncharted territory and the walks – up to then for hills only – became longer and more frequent. As the gloom gathered the headtorches went on and the feet and legs got sore, but we were always going to finish. Tim and wife Alicia were at the penultimate pitstop with our dog Orson to offer encouragement, and Tim was also there at the finish, on the stroke of midnight and a mere 16.5 hours after we started.

Money Raised – Now to the important bit. It looks like we have raised over £2,500 once Gift Aid is added in. Once again, Clare and I are humbled by the generosity of friends.

All smiles at the finish

Royal Parks Half Marathon – a personal journey

I did it!
Summary of Rob Rea’s heroic half marathon to raise funds for KL.

Well, it’s over. Months of training, sweat, aches and blisters, a frantic sponsorship drive and – finally – a 13 miles run through the heart of London.
Race day was lovely – sunny but not too hot. Thousands of runners converged on Hyde Park, from serious athletes to first-timers; all but a few running for good causes. Then there were the crowds wishing you well, and the charities’ supporters lining the route. It felt great to be part of such a happy event.

I started well, with a very quick first 5km, well ahead of my sub-2 hour target time. By now we’d run across Green Park, past Buckingham Palace, round St James’s Park, down Whitehall and past Downing Street. The second 5km takes you to Aldwych, down the Strand, through Trafalgar Square and back into Hyde Park itself. It’s a beautiful route past many iconic London landmarks, but by the halfway point I was hurting, at one point throwing so much of a bottle of water over my head, I drenched my vest and shorts and soaked the man running behind me!

At the three-quarter mark, when the race dips down into the gardens of Kensington Palace, I was still ahead of schedule but had to stop and walk for about 200 yards to get my breath back and prepare for the last push. With just a mile and a half remaining, I was overtaken by one of the pacesetters for my target time, but I gritted my teeth and ploughed on, catching the pacesetter and a new PB.

However, more important than that was the fantastic response I got from the people sponsoring me. We raised a total of £450 for Khaya Lokukhanya – money that I know will be well-used to provide care and education for children in need.

Royal Parks Run for KL

A very good friend of ours – Rob Rea – has chosen to raise funds for KL by running a Half Marathon. This is his training blog.

Hi. Thanks for sponsoring me to run the Royal Parks half-marathon (and if you haven’t, please do!). It’s now just four weeks away, and I had thought that I would be further ahead in my preparations by now. The original plan was to be doing at least one 20k run a week by the start of September, allowing me to get comfortable at that distance and spent the last week or two tapering my training runs to get ready for the big day on October 11th.

But one thing led to another, I lost a couple of weeks training to a cold, procrastinated a bit when I should have been pressing on, and by the start of August I’d done no more than one 12k run in addition to my usual training runs. So I’ve had to start upping the distance a bit sharpish, trying to lengthen the long weekly run by 1k each week, so that I can be at about 20k by the start of October.

I managed 16k on Tuesday, and the first fifteen felt just about OK. The last kilometre was torture though – my legs felt like they were encased in concrete. I am NOT looking forward to 17k this week. I will give it a go on Thursday though, and let you know how it goes.

I’d also like to do the race in under 2 hours. I managed 2.04.29 last year when I was running it for MND, and in theory I should be able to go faster. The times in training don’t look hugely encouraging so far though.

Fingers crossed..

Rob Rea

Mont Blanc Challenged

Well we almost made it! 

On arrival in Chamonix the team were warned by the guides that unseasonally hot weather had effectively melted the usual route up to the summit, and that a lesser peak might have to do, assuming we all passed the 3 days of training.  This began the following morning and culminated in a 12 hour ascent of Gran Paradiso, at 4,000 metres (13,000 ft) the tallest mountain in Italy.  It was tough going but we all made it.


Alas, on return to base we were informed that high winds would prevent any Mont Blanc attempt and that the Gran Paradiso climb – a challenge in itself – would be our sole experience of crampons, crevasses and ice axes.  In order to harness (literally) our newfound fearlessness, alternatives were offered by the guides, including rock climbing and ‘traversing’ (scrambling over jagged rocks a mere 2,800 metres up).  All in all, the team returned exercised, a little sore, and respectful of the mountain and it’s unpredictable moods.


Funds raised

With pledges still coming in, the total raised so far is in excess of £1,200.  Thanks to all those who have contributed, especially from the kids at KL


Mont Blanc Challenge 2015

MontBlancOn July 22 Team KL will set out to climb Mont Blanc to raise funds for the Khaya Lokukhanya Project. You can read about the team and our preparation below, but first a few words on why we are doing it:

This is Vuyo. Donations to KL help give children like him the chance to grow up with the care they need, attend school and be well fed and nourished by a community of foster mothers and other children. Vuyo means “Joy” in the Xhosa language. Help us bring more joy to the KL Project.

Team KL consists of Charles Weatherstone, David Gray, Clare Murphy and Rob Jones. With mountain experience ranging from lots to little or none, we are all taking this challenge seriously and have spent two weekends training in the mountains of Wales which, if you put them on top of each other, come part way up Mont Blanc! We are excited, a little apprehensive, but fully committed.

Now to the most important bit: please support the challenge.
Many, many thanks in advance for your generosity. Please come by later for pics!