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Alan Blatchford

Posted on 2020-09-16

September 16th is the 40th anniversary of Alan Blatchford’s death.


Alan was the co-founder of the LDWA and as we regret that we can’t at present do LDWA events, let’s remember and give thanks for what Alan gave us over the last 48 years. And let’s hope we’ll soon be able to do them again.


But Alan wasn’t just about challenge events, he was about long distance walking in all its forms. And, fortunately, we can still do that!


Alan’s first athletic activity was football but rambling and road running gradually took over and in 1960 he organised the first Tanners Marathon walk. He did many other challenge walks himself, and became Centurion no. 350


Alan decided it would be useful to have a newsletter to give details of such events and thus the LDWA was born. Alan was always clear that the LDWA was for runners as well as walkers but not about racing.


Alan continued as an active runner, helped set up the MABAC Fun Run League and initiated and organised the Masters and Maidens Marathon, the first all-comers marathons in the country.


He had many other interests, too. He helped coach a local Boy Scouts Cub pack in football and became a football referee. Alan was a sociable and pleasant companion with many friends.


His sudden death at the age of 44 shocked all his friends. He had achieved more in his short life than most would in two full lives.


“Whilst gloom prevails in many spheres, the walker may still stride out into the countryside and forget all his cares.” – Alan, Newsletter 10, 1974 


 


Keith Chesterton LDWA 81

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