A GROUP of intrepid trekkers have raised more than £73,000 for Weldmar.

As reported in the Echo, a group of sixteen trekkers recently took on the gruelling challenge of taking on a walk along part of the Great Wall of China.

They returned home on Monday, October 24, but before they returned they learnt just how much they’d raised.

Over the past 12 months the group have worked to get ready for the challenge and raise funds for Weldmar.

On Saturday night, when the group was in Beijing, Matt Smith from Weldmar announced to them all that their hard work had raised more than £73,000.

With temperatures reaching 22 degrees in the day and going as low as two degrees at night the challengers faced a tough challenge and had to take on varied and steep terrain.

Mr Smith said: “I joined our sixteen trekkers on their challenge, and they all coped extremely well. The trek was extremely tough and challenging. As well as the actual trek, the team had to live without any washing or toilet facilities and camp outside in very cold temperatures.

“On one night the camp had to be evacuated due to flash flooding. However, all the trekkers stayed positive - remembering why they had signed up to take part in the challenge.”

This was Weldmar's fourth overseas challenge after previous fundraising trips through the Sahara Desert, in Iceland and in Mont Blanc.

Elaine Naylor, from Portland, was one of the trekkers, she said: “It has been very emotional, it’s been the most terrifying and the most exhilarating experience of my entire life. Tears of joy and tears of laughter”.

Weldmar wanted to thank all the participants for raising money.

Mr Smith said: “On behalf of Weldmar, I cannot thank all of the trekkers enough for their tireless support and enthusiasm over the past 12 months. Every trekker was pushed to their limits whilst in China but it was fantastic to see everyone pull together as a team. £ 73,127.69 is an astonishing amount of money and will make such a difference to patients and their loved ones here in Dorset. They should all be extremely proud of what they have achieved."

Weldmar still has a few limited places left for their 2017 challenge taking on the Borneo Jungle. You can find out more at www.weld-hospice.org.uk/jungle or by calling 01305 261800.

If you wish to donate to the Great Wall of China Trekkers please visit www.justgiving.com/chinatrek2016