90-year-old Brit's garden trek raises €5,500 for charity

A 90-year-old Briton has raised nearly €5,500 for charity funds for his local Anglican church in France by completing a sponsored walk around his house and garden.

Published Last updated

Frederick William-Smith clocked up 90 circuits and a distance of nine kilometres. It was particularly challenging because he had had a toe amputated a few weeks earlier and had to walk most of the way with a frame. He completed four circuits of 100m every day, starting on June 1, and passed the finishing line at his Strasbourg home on July 5. He was accompanied across the finish line by his wife Maryline.

Walking for charity

“I was inspired by Captain Tom Moore’s 100th birthday walk, which raised so much money for the NHS,” he said. “While I did not expect to get anywhere near as much, I had to practise walking after the operation and thought it would be a good way to raise money.” He said it was painful at first but by the end he was able to do the final walk with two sticks.

He said he was pleased to contribute to the long-term projects supported by the Association Caritative Anglicane de Strasbourg, ACAS. “We are helping to restore a church in a village in eastern Madagascar which has been destroyed by storms and which is also used as a centre to shelter and feed local people as, on top of the storm, many homes were burnt in a terrible fire. We fund children through a private school in Pakistan, where there is discrimination against Christians, and were delighted recently to hear one boy has now qualified as an assistant engineer."

“He comes from a poor family and would never have had this chance without help. We also support two charities for refugees in Strasbourg. We have personal links with all the projects, so know that every euro raised will be put to good use.” This has been one of the more unusual fundraising efforts.

Usually, the church charity raises money by organising second-hand sales, meals, selling cakes, an annual calendar, and manning the bar at the Burns supper in January which was started 20 years ago by a Scottish former vicar. “We are a small church but we have a lovely congregation and we try our best to do what we can for our charity.”

Anyone can contribute by emailing frederickthescribe@gmail.com.

Help: refugee charity in urgent need of donations

Stay informed:
Sign up to our free weekly e-newsletter
Subscribe to access all our online articles and receive our printed monthly newspaper The Connexion at your home. News analysis, features and practical help for English-speakers in France