Rugby Army Cadet and father raise £5k for veterans in gruelling 150-mile march to South Wales

Kevin and Arthur.Kevin and Arthur.
Kevin and Arthur.
Kevin and Arthur have been praised by Rugby's veteran community for their efforts

A 15-year-old Army Cadet from Rugby and his dad undertook a gruelling 150-mile march to see his grandparents in Llanhilleth, South Wales, while raising thousands of pounds for Help for Heroes.

Arthur Mortimer, of Alwyn Road, had originally set out to raise £500 during the walk - but has so far exceeded that target by ten times - raising £5,677.

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Dad Kevin joined Arthur on the tough walk, with scores of residents coming to support them as they set off from the Old Laurentians grounds (where Arthur is an U15s player) on August 14.

Kevin said: "Since Arthur had his idea for the challenge things have snowballed and he’s had such fantastic support.

"We’ve had a lot of local donations and local businesses helping us with fundraising too, plus the Old Laurentian Rugby Club has a lot of ex-military who are keen to help and give us a good send off."

The Advertiser met with Kevin and Arthur after their walk at the Veterans' Breakfast, held on Saturday September 4 at the Seven Stars pub.

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Landlord Graham, himself a Navy veteran, said Rugby's ex-forces community was immensely proud of the father-son team - so they were invited to meet veterans on the morning.

Veterans at the breakfast took turns to make donations and chat with the pair, with all being impressed at their feat.

Speaking over a tasty fry-up, cooked by an ex-Army chef, Kevin and Arthur explained how amazed they were at the huge level of public support for their fundraiser.

"When we left the Old Laurentians club there was a huge turnout of people who had come to cheer us on."

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The pair expected the walk to be tough, but they were driven by their want do the town proud, and days later they arrived at Llanhilleth Rugby Club to a big crowd of supporters.

Then followed an emotional reunion with Arthur's grandparents - who he had not seen since before the pandemic.

Arthur said he has been moved by the support of the ex-forces community, and this has only further cemented his wish to join the Army when he is old enough - with his goal to be either a Combat Medical Technician or a soldier in the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers.

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