A passion for the “wonderful scenery and biodiversity” of the British countryside enjoyed while indulging his “running obsession” has led Harry Townshend to attempt to run 100 miles of Dorset footpath, in one go, this weekend (10 July). Harry, a renewable energy developer from London whose family live in Dorset, has set himself this remarkable challenge to raise money and draw attention to the work of the Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT). At the time of writing, more than £17,000 has been pledged to Harry’s fundraising effort here.
“It’s a simple plan,” said Harry, “I set off at 7am on Saturday, and I don’t stop until I’ve run 100 miles.”
With the help of a committed support team providing water, snacks and company along several stretches of the route, Harry is aiming to complete the distance sometime before 7am the next day (Sunday 11 July). His start and end point is near Abbotsbury on the coast.
Explaining why he is tackling this long-distance run, Harry said: “There are so many different, and sometimes extreme, views on how to conserve our countryside for everyone. The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust carries out scientific research and provides advice on land and wildlife management based on data painstakingly gathered over many years in the field. I’m hoping people will donate so that the GWCT can continue their valuable research and keep providing advice on how to boost biodiversity, so that more genuine conservation gets done.”
“We are so grateful to Harry for undertaking this herculean challenge to raise funds for the GWCT,” said Andrew Gilruth, Director of Membership, Marketing & Communications at the charity. “His efforts, and the generosity of those who are supporting him, will enable us to continue our vital research, supporting farmers, gamekeepers and land managers to create a thriving countryside rich in game and other wildlife.
To support Harry’s fundraising and see the latest online fundraising total, please visit https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/harry-townshend
Notes to editors
The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust – providing research-led conservation for a thriving countryside. The GWCT is an independent wildlife conservation charity which has carried out scientific research into Britain’s game and wildlife since the 1930s. We advise farmers and landowners on improving wildlife habitats. We employ 22 post-doctoral scientists and 50 other research staff with expertise in areas such as birds, insects, mammals, farming, fish and statistics. We undertake our own research as well as projects funded by contract and grant-aid from Government and private bodies. The Trust is also responsible for a number of Government Biodiversity Action Plan species and is lead partner for grey partridge and joint lead partner for brown hare and black grouse.
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