Details of this year’s Bridge the Gap charity walk through Cambridge’s historic Colleges and gardens have been announced at a special event attended by representatives from local businesses, community groups and the University. The 2017 walk will take place on Sunday 10 September and features Downing College, Corpus Christie, St Catharine’s College, St John’s College, Jesus College, Christ’s College and Emmanuel College.
With 15 years of history and more than 20,000 people taking part since it began, this ever popular event provides a unique opportunity for people to see a selection of the University of Cambridge’s most scenic College grounds and gardens in one go – whilst also raising money for local charities Arthur Rank Hospice Charity and Romsey Mill.
Hosted at The Moller Centre and organised by headline sponsor The Cambridge Building Society, Thursday’s launch enabled the Bridge the Gap team to announce the Colleges featured and presented guests with the chance to discover where this year’s route will take them. It also provided an opportunity for people to be the first to register for this year’s walk.
As an added incentive an early bird offer is in place enabling adults to take part in the walk and gain entry to all seven colleges for just £15 per person until midnight on 14 July. With up to four children free per paying adult, this is an affordable yet fun day for all members of the family. From 15 July the price will increase to £18 and for those unable to commit in advance, the option to pay on the day will be available subject to availability at the increased rate of £20 per adult.
Walkers can register online now at arhc.org.uk/bridgethegap or by picking up a registration form at any branch of The Cambridge Building Society, where Cambridge Building Society staff can always share their experience of the walk and their previous involvement as participants or volunteers.
The event will start from Parker’s Piece, with the first tranche of walkers setting off at 9.30am and the last by 10.30am, providing early or slightly later risers the ability to enjoy the circular wheelchair and pushchair friendly route which covers a distance of around five miles.
Dr Lynn Morgan, Chief Executive of Arthur Rank Hospice Charity said: “Whether you enjoy walking, plants or architecture or are simply curious to discover what lies between the walls of the Cambridge Colleges Bridge the Gap is a real feel good event. Having been involved since the start back in 2001, it is wonderful to see previous younger participants now taking part with their own families and grandparents still finding out new facts and reminiscing about years gone by. Bridge the Gap creates wonderful experiences and treasured memories by bringing people together and the funds raised help us to ensure our patients and their families can make every moment count too. Over the years, Bridge the Gap and the funds raised have enabled us to help thousands of patients to live well whilst supporting their families to live on”.
Neil Perry, Chief Executive of Romsey Mill said: “The Bridge the Gap walk brings people together to see many of Cambridge’s unique and historic sights and enjoy a positive shared experience as they walk through the College grounds and gardens. And in doing so, they are also helping others, through raising funds for local charities. In a very real and practical sense, people taking part in the Bridge the Gap walk, are partnering with us, at Romsey Mill, as we walk alongside children, families and young people who are going through some tough times, and experiencing isolation and disadvantage.”
Senior Events and Marketing Officer for the Arthur Rank Hospice Tasha Hills said: “The walk is a fabulous event to be involved in. We enjoy working with the Colleges to form the route and are really grateful to the support of the College Bursars and Porters for making us so welcome. The event attracts corporate groups as well as generations of families and we invite them to have an amazing day out while doing something great for two special charities. We are always delighted as people return and share their favourite bits and with a new route every year, we are sure this year will be no different”.
Chief Executive of The Cambridge Building Society, Stephen Mitcham added: “This is the ninth year we’ve been headline sponsor of this brilliant fundraiser and what’s most appealing for us is that it’s fun for all the family. It’s a truly community-led event organised by the community, for the community, to benefit the communities served by the benefiting charities.
We get involved with organising the event, volunteering on the day and we always have around 100 team members and their families taking part in the walk itself. It’s a highlight of our community calendar and it’d be great to welcome teams from other businesses on the walk”.