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Former journalist to trek 100 miles in son’s memory

Chris RundleA former regional press journalist is preparing to carry out a 100-mile sponsored walk as part of a £165,000 fundraising campaign to buy a lifeboat in memory of his son.

Chris Rundle, left, the former farming editor at the Western Daily Press, will carry out the six-day walk from Minehead Lifeboat Station to the Royal National Lifeboat Institution headquarters in Poole, where he aims to arrive at the Easter weekend.

He hopes to raise £2,500 with the challenge to add to the lifeboat appeal, which has already brought in £130,000 towards the £165,000 needed for an Atlantic 85 lifeboat.

The appeal was started by Chris and his family after his son Toby tragically died in his room at Oxford University in October 2009 at the age of 21 and the lifeboat will be named after him.

Chris spent 20 years as a volunteer lifeboatman in Minehead and is now the press officer for the station.

He said: “I felt it was time to do something practical myself – and a sponsored walk seemed the obvious solution.

“I wish I had time to walk the entire 630 miles of the South West coast path from Minehead to Poole but I haven’t, so I’m going to have to be content with taking a short cut across.

“If I can get 250 people to sponsor me for £10 a time I shall be very happy indeed – and it will be another decent amount to be notched up for the fund.”

Chris and his family hope to have met the appeal target by the end of 2011, although it is likely to be at least a year before the lifeboat is built.

To sponsor him, visit

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