Isle Of Man / Ellan Vannin

Isle of Man Parish Walk: 'Inspiring' stroke survivor meets goal

Edward Kelly walks through Braddan Bridge during the 2019 Paris Walk Image copyright Edward Kelly/Nick Shimmin
Image caption Edward Kelly with his friends Olivia Newstead and Lesley Patterson for help

A stroke survivor who took on the Parish Walk said he hoped his achievement would "inspire" others to push themselves.

Edward Kelly, 37, made it almost two miles to Braddan with the help of his walking aid, affectionately known as Roy Walker.

There was doubt over his participation after a fall the night before left him with concussion.

His achievement has raised more than £7,000 for the Manx Stroke Foundation.

Mr Kelly was 21 when he suffered a stroke in 2003 that left him unable to walk unsupported.

It is the first time that he has taken on the challenge since 2005, when he also reached Braddan.

He said he decided to attempt to repeat the feat this year after realising the challenge could have an "inspiring effect" on others.

Four-hour walk

Daily life was not "much different" to most, he added, but he used "more energy doing the same everyday things".

He completed about 45 miles of training in preparation but almost had to pull out after hitting his head the evening before.

Instead of taking the "early night" he was hoping for, Mr Kelly was in hospital until after midnight.

But he still took on the challenge after deciding he could not bear to drop out after "the best part of a years' worth of training".

After completing his four-hour walk - followed by a well-deserved nap - he was given the chance to cross the finish line on Douglas Promenade by organisers on Saturday evening.

Although he said he "wasn't sure" how he would feel walking over the line, he said he "revelled in the attention".

He added: "I was blowing kisses to the crowd and loving every moment of it."

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