A Bedwas man who walked 1,164 miles around Wales’ perimeter last summer in honour of his grandfather has completed his fundraising for Velindre Cancer Centre by raising a total of £6,910.57.
Gareth Axenderrie’s feet took him around the entire Wales Coast Path, down the 177 mile Offa’s Dyke Path and scaled the three highest peaks in the country in Snowdon, Cadair Idris, and Pen-y-Fan.
Gareth, 23, presented the cheque to staff at Wales’ largest non-surgical cancer hospital last week. His grandfather, Garfield, was treated for cancer at Velindre in 2009. Garfield’s battle inspired Gareth to take on the ambitious challenge as a way of showing his appreciation to the hospital.
Unfortunately, Garfield passed away at the age of 91 in October last year, just weeks after Gareth returned home following the climax of his challenge – which ended outside the Senedd in Cardiff Bay.
Speaking about his achievement, Gareth said: “It’s been an absolute pleasure to associate myself with a place as special as Velindre. My grandfather was a huge motivation and inspiration in my life.
“This very Welsh challenge started off as a joint venture of ours to say thank you. It is now a way of remembering a special Welshman who epitomised what it means to live a long and prosperous life.”
Velindre Cancer Centre, located in Whitchurch, Cardiff, provides care, treatment and support for an average of over 130,000 out patients and day cases each year.
Gareth, who has since returned to his job at Caerphilly Visitor Centre, added: “I would just like to say a huge thank you to everybody who has supported me over the last two years.
“It’s a sad reality that several of the people who have been so enthusiastic in their support for me have lost their own battles to cancer and are no longer here.
“Places like Velindre are bastions of hope, providing people with the tools to fight this horrible disease.”