Health - London Bridges Challenge for Diabetes UK

London Bridges Challenge for Diabetes UK 

 Hi everyone, I thought I would share a charity walk I did last year

Last year in September, I completed a challenge for Diabetes UK, walking 11 bridges (it was supposed to be 12, we had to miss one out, due sheep been heard over London Bridge!) I saw this challenge via a former blogger as she had completed it; I thought that looks a challenge I could do.
I finally signed up started to think of ways to fundraise. Being in Girl Guiding, my original idea was for the girls in the unit to design a badge, and then I would sell that badge through Facebook. This fell through as the idea was not followed through as I never got the go-ahead as the main leader did not put it the programme for the term to design the badge. In the end, it was like Just Giving would be okay, so my idea of a badge was wasted which was a shame as it would have been a challenge for me, plus I also like collecting badges, so I would not have a badge to add to my collection. 

 It took me ages to raise the target I had £200, I was even asking for money to the wire. When I raised £40 I got a pair of shoelaces!
 On the day of the challenge, I had a massive cold, but still turned up in the rain!
The challenge started at Battersea Park in London which was quite a bit of a fuss to get to, as we had to get a lift, then the tube from Amersham to Victoria, then the train from Victoria to Battersea Park station as we had planned the bus but it was raining. As we were walking there my dad who I did this challenge with was talking about his university days at Battersea College before his course got moved to Guildford in Surrey

Once we had arrived at Battersea Park, signed in, got our welcome packs, T-shirts and silly hats. We head towards the bandstand, having a snack and taking photos before heading to the start. 

Whilst we were waiting to start they had some speakers doing exercises!! So we got to the start, our start time was 10am. 

Once we had got there and we were let go to start walking through Battersea Park towards Albert Bridge. 
 Quite a few people were heading that way so it was a little congested! 
 Once we had crossed Albert Bridge, we headed along the bank, seeing all the sites along the way including the Royal Hospital (which I have been to see the RHS Chelsea Flower Show), Chelsea Physic Garden (which I want to see) and Battersea Park which we had come from.
Steel band playing to us to get us along with the walk, also congratulating us for finishing the first bridge The London Peace Pagoda
The Royal Hospital

Once we walked up past these, we reached Chelsea Bridge the second bridge of the challenge, we had to cross this bridge twice, we continued along the north side of the river passed Battersea Power Station, heading towards Vauxhall  
Chelsea Bridge with the coat of arms of Chelsea on a Chelsea Bridge lamp post, on the other side, is the Battersea one
Battersea Power Station

Once we had walked up along the river we arrived at the third bridge which was Vauxhall bridge, which on the left side has the M16 or SIS Building with the green roof, the bridge also has nice colours on it. 
 We crossed the bridge, behind the SIS Building, the along Albert embankment Road, it would have been nice to be on the other side, to see Tate Britain (I did not photograph it or the Basvawhar Statue). We walked along seeing the International Maritime Organization and the fire station, before crossing the fourth bridge Lambeth Bridge, towards Westminster
View Towards Lambeth Bridge
View Towards Lambeth Bridge

Once we had crossed Lambeth Bridge, we were in Victoria Place Gardens, where we stopped for a break for coffee and biscuits which we could get along the route plus at the start too,  photographing the Buxton Memorial Fountain, The Burghers of Calais, and the Emmeline Pankhurst Statue, before passing around the houses of parliament and Westminster Abbey before crossing the fifth bridge which was Westminster Bridge
View towards the Victoria Tower
Emmeline Pankhurst Statue
Crossing Westminster Bridge with the London Eye in view

Once we had crossed Westminster bridge, we headed along past the Sea Life centre (which I have been to before with Guides) and the London Eye (which I have also been up in).

Then we headed to the sixth bridge and the halfway point of the Hungerford bridge. 

 My Dad stopping on Hungerford Bridge

Once we reached Hungerford Bridge and crossed it, we only headed towards Waterloo Bridge which was the seventh bridge
View of Waterloo Bridge from Hungerford Bridge

 Once we had reached Waterloo Bridge and had crossed it, we stopped outside the National Theatre, Southbank centre of lunch at which time the rain had started again!

Once I had eaten, which was a welcome break again, the rain still making its presence know we continued towards Blackfriars bridge. We passed the Oxo tower (Somewhere I would like to visit one day for lunch!)

Building on the opposite side of Blackfriars Bridge

The insignia of the London, Chatham and Dover Railway. We passed on the Blackfriars bridge where the old railway bridge is,  we continued on the millennium bridge.

Once we reached we reached the millennium bridge, we stopped for photo's with St Pauls Cathedral in the background, I have been to see St Pauls but never inside, another thing to the bucket list!
We kept going along the millennium bridge till we reached the Tate Modern, with this strange boat in the Thames 

Once we crossed the millennium bridge we walked past the Globe theatre, which is better taken from the other side of the river, we headed towards Southwark Bridge.
Then we crossed Southwark bridge, seeing the shard, which we should have crossed.

Once we had crossed it was a long walk to the end along the Thames path, as we could not cross London Bridge due to Sheepherding and there were too many people doing the walk, it was disappointing to only do 11 bridges though. We had to head under the bridge instead of over it

Once we had gone under London Bridge instead of over it, we started to head along to Tower Bridge, walking around the Tower of London, although we walked through the crowds of tourists instead which meant we got better photo's of HMS Belfast
View of Tower Bridge from the Tower of London
Design on Tower bridge, 

We stopped to take a lot of photos on Tower Bridge, even though the rain clouds were coming to see the Tower of London from the other side of the river, as we came to the end of the walk
The Tower of London, The Gherkin and the Walkie Talkie

The Finish from Tower Bridge

Finally, I finished in 3 hrs and 45 minutes!! It felt amazing to have walked 10 miles with a cold, and high blood sugars!

I did deserve the medal I received and a cup of coffee.
 There was not a lot to do at the end expect for photo ops, as we were going to do these, it started to pour with rain! So we had them with a statue indoors near London Bridge Station
  I was happy that I had completed the walk, and would have like to complete the full amount of bridges, but with large volumes signing up, it was not possible 

I did raise over the target to get a badge (which was £125) but I never got the badge it was like a kick in the teeth for me, why I thought had the opportunity not come to me again it did not seem fair to me, I thought a badge was more of something to treasure than shoelaces. I also did not get a certificate for raising money, I had to download this. 

This has put me off from doing it the walk again, plus the fact we did not do the full challenge and it took ages for people to donate. 

Although I did raise £200, I was disappointed, to be honest, the Guide leader in me finds it very hard not to get a badge for your achievements or people that don’t like them in Guiding – who are you and why are you in Girl Guiding if you don’t like badges! 

 So I’m still hoping for a picture or that somebody does not want there and can either swap or at least show me one

 It has taken me ages to write this blog post, sorry for my honest opinion I did try to give that on the challenge survey. My donations have now closed; you can still support Diabetes UK work, by giving money or signing up for one of their challenges
Have you done a charity walk or similar, let me know in the comments

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Nic xx 

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