Tuesday, 2 July 2013

30. Land's End to John o'Groats. Inverness cape and Highland Games. £7,195.00 raised for Emmaus Oxford by Rob Brough and David Sansom.

David Sansom and Rob Brough are almost at the end of their 1,200 mile walk from one end of the British Isles to the other. 

In their latest email it was good to hear a) that the dog Ajax, whom they temporarily adopted, is back with his owners and b) not a mention of the ghastly midges.

The boys have decided to walk extra miles in the day rather than walk all through the night, and all being well, they should arrive in John o'Groats by Wednesday evening. This means that they will have done the trip in 64 days, if all goes according to their latest plans.

D+R said nothing about Inverness, but it is worth knowing about.
  • Inverness is ranked fifth out of 189 British cities for its quality of life.
  • It was called "the new Shangri-La?" in 2007 by Lorna Martin in the New Statesman. 
  • Stuart Black, area director at Highlands and Islands Enterprise, described the city as  "Vibrant, exciting and cosmopolitan. Fabulous mountain scenery. A very low crime rate, and the schools are excellent. Without doubt a great place to live and work . ."
  • Inverness is twinned with Augsburg, La Baule and St Valery-en-Caux.
The fashionable Inverness Cape was famously worn by Sherlock Holmes

  • Inverness holds the Northern Meeting for bagpipers every September, who wear the Inverness cape whenever it rains: it was designed to accommodate the sporran and give freedom to the musician's hands. Like the Australian Driza-Bone mac the cape has been adopted as a fashion item worldwide.
  • Every year the Highland Games.in Inverness include tossing cabers, stones, hammers and weights. A Sheaf Toss involves pitchforking a bundle of straw over a raised bar. Maide Leisg/Lazy Stick  is a tussle with a stick between two men on the ground with the soles of their feet pressed against each other.  
  • Polish people love living there.
 Inverness Castle. It was rebuilt in 1835 and is now a Sheriff Court

Loch Ness by Jane Nasmyth
Inverness Museum and Art Gallery
 Muirtown House, Inverness
by Alexander McInnes 1838
Inverness Museum and Art Gallery

The Hay Not in Yet by Keith Henderson 1947
Inverness Museum and Art Gallery
Monday, 1 July 2013.  Email from Rob Brough

“Hi Mary,

Walking has been very boring since Inverness. We covered 15 miles after Saturday lunchtime and then 30 miles yesterday and 10 this morning putting us 76 miles out of John O’Groats.

We are trying to walk for a bit longer today and tomorrow so we don't have to walk through Wednesday night. So we should get there on Wednesday evening by this rate.

Ajax was claimed by his owner after his picture and description were put up on several charities that have websites for this kind of thing.  He was a working dog (on a farm) apparently which is why he was so well behaved!

When we get to jog my grandparents are meeting us and after pictures and a quick drink at the last pub we will be going back to Edinburgh!  Where we will be sleeping for at least 12 hours!  We are then flying back to Oxford on Friday.


David Sansom and Robbie Brough, both 19, have raised £7,195.00 so far for Emmaus Oxford, a charity which houses and gives work to the homeless. You too can become a donor via


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