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Caithness News Bulletins July 2005

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March Of The Highlander
Tune in every night after 7.00pm to listen to Caithness FM speak to Jimmy for a progress report

DAY 6 - 22 July
After a short stroll from Tore into Inverness, (along the hard shoulder of the A( because they couldn't find any other route!) Jimmy met with volunteers from the Highland Hospice shop before walking over to the Hospice itself where a small reception had been laid on for him - complete with a cake! He also got to meet some of the patients and staff from the Hospice and was delighted with the support from them all. While he's glad that the walk is all but over, Jimmy has enjoyed the experience especially meeting so many people along the way. The support he has received has been tremendous, Hospice volunteers even provided accommodation along the route - each volunteer having their own story to tell as to why they work to support the Hospice - each with their own loss. Jimmy would like to thank everyone who has sponsored him and supported his efforts. Tomorrow sees the final leg when he'll be joined by the rest of his family to lead the annual March of the Highlanders from Culloden to Inverness.

Thank you to everyone.

Day 5 - 21 July
Almost there. Started off this morning from mid-way between Kildarry and Alness. Beautiful day, no problems with the weather or the traffic. Drivers being most considerate. Jimmy's aim was to walk to the Inverness side of the Black Isle bridge, however he was doing so well that he kept going and finished for the day at the Tore roundabout leaving him just 7 miles to finish his walk to Inverness tomorrow. Jimmy's spirits are high and he's really looking forward to reaching Inverness where he will visit the hospice shop and gather some supporters for a walk around the city centre collecting donations before heading for the hospice itself where he will meet staff and patients in the afternoon. He's had lots of support from his support van with Joanna and Graham Geddes looking after him well. Hospice volunteers have provided accommodation en route and everyone has been very welcoming. On saturday morning buses will be running from the council car park at Eden court out to the start of the official March of the Highlanders at Culloden - people can just enter on the day so there is still plenty of time
if anyone fancies taking part.

Day 4 - 20 July
A good day today with the weather improving rapidly.  Jimmy had a slight detour today and walked into Tain to visit the Highland Hospice Shop where he was made most welcome. He's actually getting ahead of his planned times now, finishing tonight mid way between Kildary and Alness leaving only 26 miles to Inverness to be covered in 2 days. The pressure is now off and he is confident that , barring any unforeseen accidents, he will complete this march. He has admitted that he has found the experience a lot harder than he anticipated but continues to be cheered by the response he is receiving from passers by. He will not, however, be volunteering to walk home!

Day 3  - 19 July
Weather was miserable, fortunately Jimmy had kitted himself out with a plastic poncho which thankfully keeps the kilt dry. Starting out from Helmsdale, he made good time today and finished his walk around 4pm at the mound. Although the walk itself was easier than the previous day, he's finding it hard going walking on stretches of the A9 where there are a lot of potholes and rough patches on the roads. He continues to attract a lot of attention and has become a "tourist attraction" with coach drivers pointing him out to visitors. The public are being extremely supportive and most drivers are being very considerate. Jimmy tells us that the feet are doing not to bad at all and he's feeling fine.

Day Two
Jimmy started off at 9.00am and got as far as Helmsdale by 4.30pm - given that this walk included both Berriedale and Dunbeath that's quite a walk! Wet weather in the morning made it a bit miserable but the day improved and he continued to get great support from passers by - raising another 80 as he walked.

Day One - All Going Well After Day One
After the 1st days walking, Jimmy finished at the poor house on the Causeymire - just 3 miles from the end of the road. Only problem today was the weather and the fly's it brought with it. Many people tooting and waving when passing and some even stopping to have a photograph taken with him as well as putting money in his tin. Most drivers being very considerate.

17 July 05
Starting Out
Local man Jimmy Findlay leaving Thurso this morning to walk to Inverness via Culloden. He hopes to walk around 20 miles a day in full Highland dress, arriving in Culloden on Friday to lead the annual March of the Highlanders into the Inverness Highland Games on Saturday 23 July. Over the last few years Jimmy and his family have raised several thousand pounds for the Highland Hospice by taking part in the annual March, this year he though he'd go a bit further and start off in Thurso. Jimmy lost a sister to cancer some years ago and was impressed by the care she received through the Highland Hospice and felt that he'd like to do something in return. If anyone would like to sponsor Jimmy, forms are still available in the Hospice shops in Thurso and Wick. If you happen to pass him on the road give him a wave or even better stop and put some money in the tin!. He will be accompanied on his journey by Hospice shop Manager Joanna Geddes and her husband who will be driving the Hospice van.