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Former Norfolk High Sheriff completes 1,500 mile trek for young carers of Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 13:16 29 June 2018 | UPDATED: 14:07 29 June 2018

Some of the more scenic scenes from the route. Picture: Twitter/James Bagge

Some of the more scenic scenes from the route. Picture: Twitter/James Bagge

Twitter/James Bagge

The former High Sheriff of Norfolk has completed a 1,500 mile trek, and has described the "determination, stubbornness, and courage" he has witnessed along the way.

Crossing the Loire. Picture: Twitter/James BaggeCrossing the Loire. Picture: Twitter/James Bagge

James Bagge set out from his birthplace in Stradsett near Downham Market 79 days ago, with his walk route set to take him along the west coast of France, and into northern Spain.

And on the morning of June 29, he completed his journey to Santiago de Compostela on the west coast of Spain.

The born and bred Norfolk resident said: “The high of the trip so far has had to be walking into the square in Santiago, knowing I’d finished. I never allowed myself to imagine what that would be like, in case my back or leg gave in and I couldn’t finish.”

The 65-year-old added: “A low would be the solitude, when walking through less charming parts of countryside or through industrial estates.

James Bagge in Pamplona. Picture: Twitter/James BaggeJames Bagge in Pamplona. Picture: Twitter/James Bagge

“But along the way I’ve met people from all over the world; Japan, Korea, the States, and they’ve shown me the horrific blisters on their feet. One woman from Brazil walked for 70km with a broken rib, they were exceptional and a highlight of the trip.”

The father-of-one continued: “I wanted to do this walk to raise money for unpaid carers. When I was High Sheriff I worked a lot with volunteers and what struck me was the community around volunteering.

“But for unpaid carers they don’t have that community and support. It struck me that I can do this charity walk as a choice, and with a destination to finish at. For them, it’s not a choice and there’s no definitive finish.”

He said: “The funds will be used to support young carers looking after their parents or siblings, and we can provide a bit of respite and bring them into a group where they can share their experiences with other people who understand.”

Which way to turn? Picture: Twitter/James BaggeWhich way to turn? Picture: Twitter/James Bagge

Mr Bagge set himself the target of raising £60,000 for young carers, of which over £44,000 including Gift Aid has been raised.

To help Mr Bagge reach his target in supporting the young carers of the county, visit: www.walking4norfolk.com.

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