Call for more walkers as 400 sign up for dusk trek

Logo for 2013 Starlight Walk on July 13 in aid of St Luke's Hospice
Logo for 2013 Starlight Walk on July 13 in aid of St Luke's Hospice
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Hundreds have already signed up for a stroll in aid of Sheffield’s St Luke’s Hospice – and there is still time for many more to join in.

People of all ages from across the city are being urged to take part in the Starlight Walk, which follows a five-kilometre route from Endcliffe Park to Forge Dam and back, with 400 people registering so far.

St Luke's Starlight Walk 2012 held at Endcliffe Park, Sheffield. The race starts

St Luke's Starlight Walk 2012 held at Endcliffe Park, Sheffield. The race starts

The walk, on Saturday, July 13, is now in its third year, and organisers are hopeful the 2013 event will attract more participants than ever before.

The hospice wants more than 1,000 walkers to generate at least £100 each in sponsorship and raise at least £100,000 for the charity.

Supporters will set off at 9pm, just as stars begin to appear in the dusk sky.

From 6.30pm there will be live music, food and a Thornbridge Brewery beer tent to keep people entertained.

A mass warm-up at 8.30pm will ensure every walker is fit for the trek ahead.

Una Moran, St Luke’s director of fundraising and communications, said: ““You can walk in memory of your loved ones, walk for someone who is unwell, whether or not they’re being cared for by St Luke’s, or just walk for fun and fitness.

“Last year, more than 1,000 people took part in the Starlight Walk, raising thousands of pounds to help us care for local people with life-limiting illnesses.”

Una said she hopes the walk will raise enough to pay for a room in the hospice’s new £5 million inpatient unit.

She said: “This year we’d love every walker to raise at least £100 then, together, we could raise enough to fund a room in our new unit.

“It’s a walk in the park, but for our patients, their families and friends it will mean much more.”

Registration costs £15 for adults and £10 for children aged five to 15. For groups of six people or more, the cost of registering is £10.

However, this fee only covers the cost of staging the event – which is why walkers should seek sponsorship as soon as they have signed up for the walk.

Una said: “This year we need to raise at least £4.5 million to keep on doing what we do so well, as just one-third of our funding comes from the NHS.

“By walking for us and fundraising for us you’ll be a part of something special, making a big difference to the loves of our patients and their families.”

The new inpatient building will provide 14 en-suite rooms, as well as other improved facilities.

To sign up for the Starlight Walk, visit www.stlukeshospice.org.uk or pick up a registration from the hospice or any St Luke’s shop.

St Luke’s, the first hospice outside London when it was founded in 1971, supports more than 1,000 people each year, whether in their own homes or in the hospice in Whirlow.

The charity gets a limited amount of funding from the health service every year, but needs to raise millions from donations to keep its doors open.