‘There were blisters, sweat and tears but it was worth it’ – Shefford woman’s 29-hour trek to raise funds for MS charity

Rachel Browning and Naomi Parkinson at 33 kilometres on their 29 hour London to Brighton walk.

Rachel Browning and Naomi Parkinson at 33 kilometres on their 29 hour London to Brighton walk. - Credit: Archant

A Shefford woman who walked for nearly 29 hours straight at the weekend to raise money for the MS Society has been described as a ‘heroine’ by her grandmother who inspired the challenge.

Rachel Browning and Naomi Parkinson after their 29-hour charity trek for the MS society.

Rachel Browning and Naomi Parkinson after their 29-hour charity trek for the MS society. - Credit: Archant

Naomi Parkinson set off on the London 2 Brighton 100k trek from Richmond Park at 9.20am on Sunday with her friend Rachel Browning to raise money for multiple sclerosis, which her grandmother Ann and aunt Angela are both diagnosed with.

Naomi said: “I wanted a challenge when I turned 25 and this was the hardest thing I’ve ever done.

“At around midnight, so 15 hours in, I thought I’m not going to be able to do this but I had amazing support from my family – my gran was texting me on the way, and I was getting loads of support on social media, it made a massive difference.”

She crossed the finish line at Brighton racecourse at 2.13pm on Sunday with support from her family and friends, and wanting to do well for the cause the motivation to keep going.

Naomi Parkinson, from Shefford, crossing the finish line in Brighton after nearly 29 hours of walkin

Naomi Parkinson, from Shefford, crossing the finish line in Brighton after nearly 29 hours of walking continuously. - Credit: Archant


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“I think my gran and my aunt are both really proud that I can do this for the cause, all my family have been amazing. My mum Carolyn and dad Andy even walked 2 kilometres with me, and they were at the finish line cheering me on,” she said.

Naomi said brothers Christoper, 31, and Alexander, 29, as well as sister Bethany, 27, have also been so supportive.

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The data analyst has raised £665 so far and will have her total topped up by her employer Tesco by a further 20 per cent.

Naomi said: “After the walk I hobbled around a lot, I slept for more than 12 hours then I had my sister Bethany’s hen do to go to so I’m still recovering!

“There were blisters, sweat and tears but walking across that finish line was the best feeling. and I’m even thinking of doing it again next year, it really was worth it,

Extremely proud Grandmother Ann, 79, who lives with carer husband David, 80, in Hitchin, said: “Naomi is cheerful, caring and courageous and we are so proud of her for this terrific achievement – she really is a heroine.”

If you want to add to Naomi’s total, go to justgiving.com/fundraising/NaomiParkinson.

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