Four pals have embarked on a mammoth walking challenge to raise money for an Alzheimer’s charity.
Heather Miller, 59, is taking on a virtual walk from Land’s End to John o’ Groats along with her friends Jacqueline Findlater, Diane McCall and Jacqui Clark.
The group decided to take on the challenge after a holiday to Portugal was cancelled due to the pandemic last year, and opted to raise money for Alzheimer’s Scotland in the process.
All four friends have been affected by the disease in some way, with Heather explaining the heartbreaking impact it has had on her mum Jenny, 87.
She said: “We were all supposed to be going on holiday last year to Portugal and then because of the pandemic the holiday was cancelled.
“Because we still had the 10 days for going, we all met up on various days and went for walks.
“Jacqui suggested we could do the Conquerer challenge which is walking from Lands End to John O Groats.
“Over the past six or seven years, my mum’s had Alzheimer’s and I’ve seen how this disease can change a person from person you know to just a shell and the person inside has gone.
“So we agreed we’d do it for Alzheimer’s.”
The group are going out walking individually as and when they can in their own areas, then logging their distances covered until they have all travelled the full distance from Land’s End to John o’ Groats.
They started the challenge in February, and are aiming to reach their goal on July 31.
Heather, a customer service manager in a bookmaker, has been on furlough and had more time to get her miles in, but some of the group have had to juggle the challenge with work.
And they have also had to compete with the weather, with heavy snow at the beginning, and more unseasonably wintry weather this week as well.
Heather, of Inverurie, said: “It’s a challenge. At the beginning in February when there was really bad snow it was hard.
“To be honest on the pavements and roads it’s actually okay for walking. It’s not as bad as it was in February.
“My incentive is the photos I’m getting from the care home of my mum.
“To see what this disease has done to her is the biggest incentive I’ve got.
“The girls are the same, they’ve all got somebody who’s affected by it.
“I’ve been turning to them and asking for their advice with my mum.
“I don’t think it’s highlighted enough how bad this disease can be and how hard it is living with it.
“We’re walking every day. We’ve got to do a minimum of five to seven miles a day.
The group have already raised more than £800, with Heather admitting they were “chuffed” with the total.
To donate, visit