Theford couple's charity walk - to celebrate their 60th birthdays

Rebecca Gough Most people would be planning to put their feet up and enjoy a day of celebration as they celebrated their 60th birthday.

Rebecca Gough

Most people would be planning to put their feet up and enjoy a day of relaxation as they celebrated their 60th birthday.

But one adventurous couple have tossed aside tradition and pledged to walk almost 200 miles from coast to coast in aid of charity.

Des and Allan Talbot will walk 193 miles, a total ascent and descent of 22, 825ft, from St Bee's in Cumbria to Robin Hood's Bay in North Yorkshire in aid of Macmillan nurses.

Rather than hold a party or accept presents for their birthdays, Mr and Mrs Talbot, of Thetford, have asked generous family and friends to donate to their cause and have already raised more than �1,000 .

They will begin the walk on June 14, arriving 16 days later on Mr Talbot's 60th birthday on June 29.

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He said: “The weather will be the main factor because we've been fair weather walkers for some time, but I feel we've got to be up to walking whatever the morning brings us.

“If we have days with low cloud it could cause problems, but we've got a Garmin [a navigation device] to pinpoint where we're going, which will give us confidence. Doing it from west to east, you're doing the hard part first.”

The couple have also hired the help of two companies which will transport their luggage to the next overnight stop each day and book their accommodation throughout the walk to give them extra piece of mind. They expect to walk between eight and 17 miles per day.

The pair, who have two grown-up children, Mark and Sasha, and two grandchildren, Maddison, five, and Caden, three, are regular walkers in Norfolk, North Yorkshire and the Lake District.

To get in shape for their latest challenge, Mr Talbot, a long distance lorry driver with DHL, often cycles through Thetford, and Mrs Talbot, a retired headteacher of Queensway Junior School, follows a fitness programme in the gym.

Mrs Talbot, who turned 60 on January 11, said the pair chose Macmillan nurses as they had family members who had suffered with cancer

She said: “I've done the Race for Life for six years and thought let's support a different charity this year. We've had donations from everybody, even people we don't know. I think it's because it's a charity which is significant to a lot of people.

“Of course we've very appreciative of everybody who has donated.”

To sponsor Mr and Mrs Talbot, visit