Jon Wills is walking an incredible 215 miles, come rain or shine, from his home in Leicestershire to the home town of his close friend ‘Poustie’ (John Poustie).

Picture of Jon Wills

They’ve been friends for 45 years after meeting at St. Luke’s college in the 70’s and even taught together for a short while in Devon. Poustie went on to become a ‘legend’ at Exeter School where he taught for 23 years until his retirement in 2014. He is a well-known raconteur – and teacher that everyone would want to be taught by – enthusiastic, knowledgeable and entertaining with an infectious sense of humour; he taught History, was a Housemaster as well as a Sports Coach.  
 
‘He is, without doubt, one of the finest all round Sportsman I have known. At Bedford School he was in the 1st XI Cricket team for 5 years. He played fly half in a very strong St. Luke’s College 1st XV Rugby team as well as for Wasps RFC, Torquay Athletic RFC, Exeter RFC and Devon. In addition he was an outstanding Squash player.’ Said Jon
 
Hearing John had been diagnosed with Alzheimers and about the invaluable support that Age UK Exeter provides for people like John and Lindsey living with dementia, Jon decided to take on a mammoth challenge to raise money for the local charity, their initiatives and dementia service and of course to raise awareness of the illness:
 
‘I am looking forward to the challenge and hope to walk approximately 18 miles a day along mostly minor roads. I aim to reach Exeter on Sunday 20th August. Every mile I walk means more money to help those faced with the difficulties of living with Alzheimers’
If you would like to support Jon on his long trek it’s easy to donate here: Virgin Money Giving

 
Hearing a diagnosis of a Dementia can be difficult. If you or someone you care for are affected by this diagnosis then you can get in touch with Age UK Exeter on 01392 202092. We run advice services, day services, and carer support for those affected by this range of conditions.

Thanks go to Oakham School for giving updates about Jon's progress!

 

Progress so far:

We've put in a link to Google Maps, though this is an approximation of his walk - we're not quite sure of his route as it changes!

Google Maps

Day One - Market Harborough '

August 6
Day one and a distance of 28 miles covered! First stop Market Harborough.

Picture of Jon Wills at Market Harborough

August 7
I walked 22 miles today and the last hour was tough. Finished at 6.15pm.

Picture of Jon Wills at Daventry

August 8
Took a wrong turn and did some extra miles, which now total 70. I am now relaxing in the Banbury Best Western after a very challenging walk in the rain!!

Picture of Jon Wills at Adstone

Outside a National Trust property 10 miles NE of Banbury

Picture of Jon Wills at a National Trust property 10miles NE Banbury

August 9
Ahead of schedule and as it is pouring with rain, looks like it may be a rest day unless it stops by lunchtime.

August 9
Clean socks and ready to go from Banbury to Chipping Norton early tomorrow morning.  A huge thank you to the lady in the launderette for making a donation.

Picture of Jon Wills at Chipping Norton

August 10

Left at 7.30am today feeling good.

Very sunny and I am just passing near Bloxham School.

Picture of Jon Wills by the Welcome to Bloxham sign

I am making very good time today and I've reached Chipping Norton - it's a very busy road, hence I'm not in the picture! Cracking on south for a few more hours. More donations being given along the way; people are so generous.

Picture of the sign of Chipping Norten

August 11

Up and out at sunrise this morning!

Sunrise on the 11 August

August 12
Outside the Red Lion at Cricklade! Off to Sherston today.

August 13
Walking the lovely Fosse Way to Bath and passed this intriguing sign!

sign saying 'Hyde Park Corner 100, Sodbury 8'

August 14
Arrived at Shepton Mallet! Another 18 miles covered, total now 164 miles. Feeling quite fit!!!

Downside Abbey. Stunning. Just met a monk who was good friends with Bertie Bowes former Wharflands Housemaster in 1950s! What a small world!

Bath to Shepton Mallet today. Definitely walking more slowly now! Aiming to finish in Exeter by Friday.

two pictures, one of Downside Abbey, the other, the Shepton Mallet sign

August 15
On the road by 8am. The mound at Glastonbury in the far distance. Wonderful!

The Somerton welcome sign and green fields of Wessex

August 15
On the road by 8am. The mound at Glastonbury in the far distance. Wonderful!

Nearly there for today. Interesting route - lorry jumping and going through a maize field. Time for some Scrumpy cider!

Two images of England's green and pleasant land

August 16
Being Interviewed by Exeter Radio at 11.15am today. Hope to reach Taunton by mid afternoon. 179 miles done. About 50 to go!

08.52am - Leafy mid-Somerset Lane with Taunton way in the distance. 

2.54pm - England's green and pleasant land, 2 miles to Taunton, phew!

18 miles completed today, total miles = 197. Very pleased only 2 days to go!

Jon Wills with Giles Houston

August 17
Just met Giles Houston close to Wellington on Somerset. 204 miles now done and the sun is shining. Celebrating with a cream doughnut!


NEARLY HERE!