A SCARBOROUGH woman will be celebrating her 40th birthday under canvas as she takes on a mammoth fundraising challenge.
Anne Hunter, of Commercial Street, is setting off to walk the Pennine Way on June 19.
The 270-mile route makes its way through the Peak District National Park, along the Pennine ridge through the Yorkshire Dales, up into Northumberland, across the Cheviots and down into the Scottish Borders.
Mrs Hunter, who works as a service advisor at Des Winks in Eastfield, is taking on the challenge alone in aid of the Royal British Legion.
She said: “I wanted to do something different and worthwhile for my 40th and I’ve recently taken up walking since getting a dog.
“I chose this charity in particular because I used to be a nurse and have looked after quite a few veterans.
“I was touched by the memories they talked about and the emotions involved. It also touched my heart that people went through so much.
“This is my way of saying thank you to those who have served and are still serving.”
Mrs Hunter has collected in £414 so far and would like to raise around £1,000 in sponsorship.
She is hoping to complete the challenge in around 20 days and will be camping out every night.
Her backpack weighs three stone and she has christened it “Bernie”.
Mrs Hunter said: “Now it’s dawned on me exactly what I’m undertaking I feel pretty scared!
“I am looking forward to it though and there’s not much time left now until I go.
“Friends and family think I’m a bit crackers. Everybody keeps saying ‘you’re brave’ which is a bit disconcerting! But I’ve got some really supportive colleagues and my husband has been great.”
Mrs Hunter is hoping to cover around 12 miles a day and is hoping for cool, dry weather.
She said: “It will be three weeks of ‘me time’ and I’m sure it will be a culture shock when I come back to civilisation.”
If you would like to sponsor her go to www.virginmoneygiving.com/AnneHunter
The web page also features a blog which is already under way and which will be updated during the trip.
The Royal British Legion provides welfare to the whole Armed Forces family – serving, ex-service and their dependants.
The charity also campaigns on a range of issues affecting service people, is the custodian of Remembrance, runs the annual Poppy Appeal and is one of the UK’s largest membership organisations.