About my blog

CLL is the acronym for Chronic Lymphocytic Leukaemia. CLL is the most common cancer of the blood. However, unlike many other leukaemias, CLL is incurable. Innovative research is desperately needed to provide treatments which are more effective than the derivatives of chemical warfare agents currently in use. Research however costs money.

In 2009 I walked from John o'Groats in the north east of Scotland to Land's End in the south west of England. Hence the acronym JOGLE. The purpose of my walk was to make more people aware of this insidious disease and to encourage them to sponsor me by donating to the research groups I was supporting. It was a most enjoyable experience and I met some wonderful people. Together we raised over 2000 pounds for the cause. Thank you everyone!

In, 2010, the blog was being continued for those who may have be interested in following my walking holiday in Wales. This was not a charity walk.

Sadly this year, 2013, Alan Frost, a senior member of the Wednesday Loafers, our cancer support group, passed away. Many medics will tell you that CLL can be cured by a bone marrow transplant. Alan had battled with the cure for many years. More research is needed, but significant progress has been made since I started this blog.

CLL is still killing my friends. The organizations listed at the side of this blog would welcome any contributions you would like to make towards their research.

Please feel free to pass on the details of this site to anyone you think may be interested. The link is www.cancerwalker.com

Monday, August 17, 2009

Day 41, Crowden to Hayfield, Sun 16 Aug

Today's distance: 19.6 km (12.2 miles)
Total distance: 992 km (617 miles)
Distance to go: 636 km (395 miles)


It rained in Crowden overnight but by morning it was fine and clear. I was camped in an area with other PW walkers and as a result rose early. I was on the road by 7.15 AM, my earliest yet. I didn't start on the PW as that went uphill.
I went down and followed a path via the reservoir which was mostly flat. The climb up Torside Clough was hard going but it was a cool morning which helped somewhat. In the area near Torside Castle I was passed by Mark and James who were heading to Edale so I just followed them. I noticed that I didn't cross the river, which I had crossed on my two earlier PW trips. I eventually finished up at Wainstones which I recognised from a photograph I had seen earlier.
Mark and James were obviously not following the PW, but then again neither was I. I was just wondering where to head next when 2 runners appeared. I asked them where they had come from and they said Edale so I headed in the direction from which they had come. I found the PW track and began to follow it. Up until then it had been quite bleak and lonely but the atmosphere suddenly changed as I came across more and more walkers heading up the PW.

About 1 mile before the Snake Pass I met up with Martin. He had contacted me the previous day to say he would walk with me and provide me with accommodation for the night and take me to and from my route in the manner of "A Proud Scotsman".
I accepted the offer of company on the walk and arranged to meet up with Martin somewhere between Hayfield and Crowden.
I was a bit worried about accepting an offer of accommodation from someone I had not met before but after walking with Martin for a few minutes it became obvious that he was another very generous long distance walker in the "Proud Scotsman" mould. Walking in good company made the day go very quickly and we were at Hayfield by 2.15pm. That would make me estimate the walk at about 14 miles. Please note that the mileages put up each day on the blog were determined from the maps of my proposed route and they are not my actual mileage. In the long term though I think they are probably pretty accurate.

We picked up Martin's car at Hayfield and he then took me to his home near Manchester where I met his wife Sue. I then had a very welcome hot bath. Showers are welcome but hot baths are fantastic. Matin's son, daughter and son-in-law came over and I had an excellent meal in an unbelievably welcoming atmosphere. I think the Germans use the expression gemutlich. It was fantastic to be made so welcome by complete strangers. The TGO obviously has a very good influence on people's behaviour or is it that the TGO just selects for very nice people.

I have been lucky with my CLL in that it has, so far, been comparatively benign. However it has enabled me to meet so many very nice people around the world via the Internet, many of whom are not nearly so fortunate. If I am to be honest, up to now, CLL has had a positive influence on my life. I realise others are not nearly so fortunate and hopefully research may eventually lead to a cure. Your donations will help speed things up so that our children will not have to live in fear of what I am sure is a controllable, if not a curable illness.

Undertaking this walk has given me an even deeper insight into the common decency of so many people who are happy to put themselves out to help others. Martin and Sue are a great example. The great thing about my walk has not been the scenery or the wildlife but the chance to meet so many very nice people.


  1. Dear Dr. Barr,

    I am a Mexican PhD student of Electrical Engineering at the University of Birmingham. I was actually looking for your papers related to acoustic target identification (in the spirit of Barr and Coombs, 2005) and I stumbled upon your quest.

    What a coincidence that my own research is related to your own work and that you will be passing near by Birmingham soon! I wish I could meet you and walk with you but I will be in Zurich from this thursday to sunday. Maybe I could catch up with you ahead in your routh...

    I believe that you are doing something admirable and I would like to cheer you up in your long journey. I will try to do a donation soon as well.

    Best regards!
    Alan Islas

  2. Richard - It sounds as if you have had a splendid day and met up with an old reprobate and his wonderful wife.

    Walking Lejog (or Jogle, in your case) you do get to meet somewonderful people. Britain is not about landscape. It's as much about the people.

    Early days yet, but how abut coming back sometime for a crack at the TGO Challenge?

    All the best

  3. Hi Richard
    Thank you for your undeservingly kind comments. It was a pleasure to have your company for a few hours, and good to see you set off refreshed on what may be a few long days.
    Do take care, and do enter the TGO Challenge - we think you'd really enjoy the walking and the cameraderie.
    All best wishes
    Martin and Sue

  4. Hi Alan 'lslas', l,d be pleased to meet up with you and chat about target ld. You can find where l am from my blog or get my phone no from Colin. See blog for details.
    Hi Alan 'Sloman' and Martin. I might be game for the TGO if it is gua
    ranteed to be outside the MIDGE season! Cheers gentlemen.