A BROMSGROVE man will be trekking 84 miles along Haidran’s Wall to raise funds for the Alzheimer’s Society and awareness of the degenerative disesase.
Andy Frizzell shall leave Segadunum Roman Fort in Wallsend Tyne and Wear and end his walk in Bowness-on-Solway, North Cumbria on the west coast seven days later.
He chose the cause because a few years ago his mum, who died in 2010, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and dementia.
“It was a difficult time for my father who was in his 80s but he was fiercely protective of her and soldiered on despite it all.
“My mum had to eventually go in to care and ended her days being looked after by some very dedicated people.”
Over the past couple of years, Andy and his family noticed a deterioration in his older sister – she was having difficulty remembering things and was struggling to do simple things, such as making phone calls.
Her text messages became incoherent and eventually they stopped altogether and even her mobile phone went missing.
Andy added: “It became increasingly difficult for her husband to cope (a familiar situation for many spouses).
“The inevitable happened and my sister had to go into care as she often walked out of her house despite the best efforts of her husband and would need the assistance of the local police to find her.”
Andy’s sister was diagnosed as having vascular dementia and has now been in care since last summer. She seems settled there but very confused when he visits her.
“At least she still recognises family members including me, which is a blessing because my mum always confused me with being her brother.
“All of this makes everyone feel very helpless and feel unable to do anything about it.
“The only thing we can do is to find a cure for this awful disease and help those who are affected by it.”
Andy is no stranger to walks, having undertaken charity treks before.
He added: “I walked the much harder Offa’s Dyke Path in May 2017 for the Midlands Air Ambulance which raised over £2,500.
“I am hoping to raise a minimum of £1,500 for the Alzheimer’s Society.”
The figure is currently at £800.
This year marks the 1,900th anniversary of Hadrian’s Wall and Andy’s fund-raiser is one of lots of events taking place there throughout 2022.
Visit justgiving.com/fundraising/hadrianswallcoast2coast to contribute to Andy’s cause.
He will also be writing a blog of his adventure – visit walking-the-wall.com for more and his latest updates.