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Winchester women's group sets out on mammoth charity trek
5:21pm Monday 11th March 2013 in Winchester
INTERNATIONAL Women’s Day saw members of a Winchester volunteer group set out on the first leg of an 82 mile trek.
Winchester’s Soroptimists International organised the walk around the district, dubbing it the Beating of the Bounds – a reference to the ancient practice of older residents showing youths the boundary of their parish, lest it be forgotten.
On Friday, March 8, Mayor of Winchester, Frank Pearson, was on hand wave off a handful of hardy souls as they set out from the district’s western-most point at Sparsholt.
Their route extended east to the Meon Valley, then on toward Fareham before heading north-west and back to Sparsholt.
Organiser Gill Steel said: “There were times when I thought I might not quite make it to the end but as the song goes ‘You'll never walk alone’ and to-day I was very glad of that.”
Soroptimists, often likened to a female Rotary Club, are an international organisation that aim to be women ‘inspiring action, transforming lives’.
The Winchester branch enjoy high-profile patrons including the mayor, Hampshire’s Lord Lieutenant, Dame Mary Fagan, and MP’s Steve Brine and Geroge Hollingbery.
The walk will raise funds for Emmaus, the Trinity Centre, Winchester Churches Night Shelter and Stonham, who manage a domestic violence refuge.