Their story, in their words….
We left for our Mark Evison expedition at 4:30 towards Victoria coach station to catch the national express coach to Southampton at 6:30. From there we arrived in Southampton at 8:30am and had to rush to the Red Funnel Ferry terminal for 9:00am making it with 5 minutes to spare. We then arrived smoothly and promptly in the Isle of Wight at 10:00.
From here we used our map to follow our preplanned route towards Heathﬁeld Farm Camping. This having no major problems except us at one point taking the wrong path but quickly correcting ourselves as well as the group getting reasonably badly sunburnt in the 26° heat.
The next day towards Paradise cottage Campsite was also reasonably problem free. The group woke up at 7:00am and made breakfast and by 8:00am we were on our way. The only stoppages were caused by us having to stop only for lunch and to buy some aftersun to put onto our sunburnt necks and arms. We also occasionally stopped to admire the views of the landscape and take the heavy bags oﬀ our backs for brief periods of time.
The morning routine was the same as it had been the day before with us walking by 8:00am towards carpenters farm camp site. This day however being the longest and most tiresome as we had to stop in Wroxall to buy new food supplies and any other essential items we needed meaning our bags were back to being their maximum weight again as well as the distance of this day being the greatest we had to cover. With us ﬁnally arriving at the campsite for 6:30pm.
The fourth day was the same routine as the last few days however by this point walking was becoming more diﬃcult as members if the group had blisters on their feet making it uncomfortable the walk this forcing the group to have to take more stoppages than on previous days. This meaning it took as long as it did to walk 16km as it did to walk the 23km on day three meaning we arrived at Waverley Park Holiday Centre at 6:30pm two hours later than we would have wanted and expected to.
The last day consisted of us walking breilt to the ferry terminal to catch the 12:30 ferry to Southampton allowing the group to lie in until 9:00am. Then from Southampton there was a short walk back to the coach station and a smooth journey to Victoria from which we fought the train home to New Malden station.
Our Mark Evison challenge taught us many skills like teamwork, time management and organisational skills as everything we did we did independently and for our own beneﬁt. The group is very thankful for having the opportunity to take the Mark Evison challenge and would wholeheartedly recommend it to younger year groups who are thinking of taking part in a challenge of their own.