Tyne & Wear

Sir Bobby Robson charity walk in memory of Lee Hope

Hike4Hopey challenge
Image caption The walk ended at St James' Park in Newcastle

Two walkers have completed a 333-mile (536km) trek from Ipswich to Newcastle to raise money for the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation.

Hike4Hopey was in memory of Lee Hope, who died last year aged 33 after a 13-week battle with bowel cancer.

Only two of the original nine walkers completed the 12-day challenge, which ended at St James' Park on Saturday.

The group raised more than £17,000 for the foundation, which was set up in 2008 to help fund cancer research.

The walk started at Sir Bobby's statue at Portman Road, home of Ipswich Town and ended at his statue at Newcastle United's ground. He managed both clubs.

Image copyright Family handout
Image caption Lee Hope would have been proud of those doing the charity walk, said his brother

Lee's brother Scott, who was one of the two to complete the walk, said: "When we thought about doing this walk for Lee, it was like we were just coming home from the match. He was a massive Newcastle fan so it just felt right.

"It's proved to be a lot harder than we thought it would be, physically and emotionally.

"We were on the road for the first anniversary of Lee's diagnosis with cancer and we were walking the day after Newcastle were promoted, so there have been highs and lows. But everyone's worked together and it's been an incredibly positive experience."

Image copyright PA/Getty
Image caption The walk started at Sir Bobby's statue in Ipswich (left) and ended at his statue in Newcastle

Greeting the group in Newcastle, Sir Bobby's widow, Lady Elsie Robson, said: "This is an absolutely magnificent achievement. I'm very glad everyone's home safe and sound and I hope they're all filled with pride."

Lee, a Newcastle United fan, moved to Guernsey in 2010 where he lived with his wife Amy and daughter Livia.

Scott, who works for Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service, said the walkers were given overnight accommodation at fire stations along the route.

To date the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation has raised £10m.

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