Jo Brand to kick start the
'Great Big Walk' on 29 May 2017
THE 'Big Lunch' is doing something different this year in the run
up to 'Big Lunch' day. Starting on Monday, 29 May 2017, 10 walkers
will set out on 'The Great Big Walk,' an adventure that spans the
UK, connecting people and celebrating community all along the way. The walk will
be launched by comedian and charity walk fundraiser Jo Brand.
'The Great Big Walk' is funded by the National lottery and will
highlight the rich diversity of communities that make up the backbone of the UK
and celebrate all we have in common.
The 2 Northern Ireland walkers are Olivia Cosgrove, the founder of Row the Erne,
and volunteer with Refugee Rescue, and Noel Johnston, who holds the record for
walking the Ulster Way in 28 days, to raise money for charity and needy
Olivia Cosgrove explained that she was inspired to walk by her experiences
working on The Big Lunch in her area. She sees The Great Big Walk as 'a
storytelling pilgrimage' with communities in Northern Ireland.
Olivia Cosgrove said:- "I am excited about walking through England and
Northern Ireland to meet 'battery chargers', all passionate about what they do,
people who ? are now having an impact on their communities. Their work is often
a quiet, but constant pulse steadily recharging the batteries of others. I want
to meet, acknowledge and become inspired by these people. I want to carry their
story to the next town, I know it will feed my journey."
Jo Brand said:- "I know these guys are going to have an incredible time on
The Great Big Walk and I urge anyone who sees them to beep, honk, wave and clap
to show you care. From all the way up in sunny Scotland right down to the coast
of Cornwall, let's see which town can give them the friendliest welcome (and the
odd biscuit!). And if like me, your dog ate your trainers and your Lycra shorts
are in the wash, then you can always plan a Big Lunch, invite your neighbours
and just eat cake!"
The teams will travel home, finishing simultaneously, on Sunday, 18 June 2017,
in:- Scotland, Northern Ireland, Wales, Cornwall and London. Every day, the
walkers and their supporters will visit different community projects and
initiatives and will spend time with the extraordinary people who go the extra
mile to bring communities together.
Peter Stewart, Eden Project Executive Director, said:- "The Great Big Walk
will shine a light on the ordinary people all over the UK doing extraordinary
things for their community. Whether coming together in celebration or in
solidarity, in times like these the importance of community unity is greater
than ever before. This project will share the positive impact that people coming
together can have."
Setting off from Batley, West Yorkshire, where Jo Cox was MP, the 5 teams of
walkers will head home in time to join 'The Big Lunch' as the
highlight of 'The Great Get Together' celebrations inspired by Jo
Cox, and marking the 1st Anniversary of her death, over 16 June to 18 June 2017.
Joe Ferns, Big Lottery Fund's UK Knowledge and Portfolio Director said:-
"Thanks to money generated by National Lottery players, The Great Big Walk is
connecting people and communities across the UK. We are excited to be inviting
the walkers to visit some amazing projects, created by local people, and share
their experiences with others."
People can get involved in 'The Great Big Walk' by showing support
and cheering the walkers along their way. Or go for a stroll with a neighbour, a
tour with the town or anything in between and join 'The Big Lunch,'
on 18 June 2017, for the biggest community celebration the UK has ever seen.
For more information about 'The Great Big Walk' go to:-
TheGreatBigWalk.com and also for information on the
'Lottery Fund' visit:-