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The Marathon Hikers of Dorset

by glynch — last modified 21 Jun, 2018 04:52 PM

Clergy currently racking up hundreds of miles across the county in prayer and to raise money for good causes

Dorset is the scene of two marathon hikes at present, as the Vicar of Beaminster and Archdeacon of Sherborne both gain the benefit of excellent weather to walk around the churches of their patches – raising money for good causes and supporting Archbishop Justin’s Thy Kingdom Come initiative in the process.

The Rector of Beaminster Area Team Ministry, Revd Canon David Baldwin, is currently walking the 26 miles between the team’s 15 churches – all during today.

The rector and, his colleague the Revd Joanna Neary, will complete the sponsored walk to raise money for the Beaminster Team’s mission fund, which carries out outreach work among local children, schools, and families. The event is part of the global Thy Kingdom Come prayer movement being celebrated between Ascension and Pentecost.

The 26 mile, 385 yard cross-country walk between the 15 churches began at 6am at South Perrott and will end later today at Toller Porcorum. Along the way David and Jo are visiting the churches of Beaminster, Netherbury, Hooke, Drimpton, Salway Ash, Blackdown, Mapperton, Burstock, Seaborough, Broadwindsor, Stoke Abbott, Mosterton, and Melplash.

[uploaded 17 May 2018]At the same time, the Archdeacon of Sherborne is coming to the end of a whopping 131 mile walk around the edge of his archdeaconry to raise money for the PLANETS initiative at the University of Southampton Hospital. PLANETS works to overcome pancreatic, liver, abdominal, and neuroendocrine tumours.

Archdeacon Paul said, “The walk is in honour both of my 14 years as Archdeacon of Sherborne, which will come to an end when I retire later this month, and the extraordinary care my wife Janet received when she underwent a major operation in Southampton University Hospital in early February.

“So far, Paul I have walked 102 miles and raised over £6,000. I expect to finish tomorrow, Friday.”

People can donate here.

Over in Beaminster, David Baldwin said, “We have over the past years undertaken a number of initiatives such as prayer walks in each of the parishes and prayer walking over a number of days between all 15 churches, but this year I’m going to have a crack at doing it all in one day. It’s a daunting distance of 26 to 30 miles dependant on how lost I get along the way.

“This is a great opportunity to show our church’s commitment to these areas of our longer term mission across the communities served by the Beaminster Area Team.”

Revd David invites those who wish to sponsor him on his epic trudge across West Dorset to do so via the Beaminster Team Church Office or via the team’s new website at

Lower photo: Archdeacon Paul outside Bulbarrow this afternoon.

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