Last weekend saw the tenth anniversary of the Cateran Yomp, with hundreds of supporters trekking 54-miles across the Scottish Highlands for the Army family!

Yompers pushing through the challenge (Ed Smith Photography).

The Yomp is Scotland’s largest mass participation walking event – a gruelling, 54-mile, 24-hour trek along the historic Cateran Trail in Perthshire.

After the unfortunate delay due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we anticipated the launch of this year’s event more than ever before. On the bright side, it allowed all those who took part to put in an extra year of training and preparation, which really paid off!

Raising vital funds for the Army family, our Yompers really did us proud, braving the elements and battling sleep as they trekked the challenging route through day and night.

Smashing the record

This year’s winner, Eddie Towler from West Yorkshire, finished the 54-mile route in a record nine hours and 53 minutes. The 53-year-old veteran of The Duke of Wellington’s Regiment has been a champion fundraiser for our charity this year, having been inspired by the efforts of fellow veteran Captain Sir Tom Moore. Eddie was also the Yomp’s top fundraiser, managing to collect almost £7,000 for our charity.

This year’s winner Eddie Towler (David Cheskin).

“There are some really nasty hills out there. It was emotional but I really enjoyed it.”

Eddie Towler, first place winner

Honeymoon in the Highlands

Another highlight of the 2021 Yomp was seeing two newlyweds from Fife, Emma Adams and husband Andy, take part in the charity event as part of their honeymoon. It was incredible to witness such a special occasion being integrated into our tenth anniversary celebration and we’re honoured they chose to support us.

Emma and Andy took part in the Yomp as part of their honeymoon (Ed Smith Photography).

“We just wanted to do something completely different and walking is something we both enjoy. We also wanted to raise money for ABF Soldiers’ Charity, which is just an amazing charity.”

– Emma Adams

Support from across the world

It’s always fantastic to meet Yompers from not only all walks of life, but also from all across the world! Guy Houston, 60, travelled all the way from California to take on the Cateran trail. We’re thrilled this event brings together people from across the world, providing them with an opportunity to explore the Scottish countryside while raising vital funds for the Army family.

Guy Houston travelled all the way from California to take on the Cateran trail (Ed Smith Photography).

“I do a lot of hiking in California and set my heart on the Cateran Yomp after seeing it online. It was fantastic to finally get here and walk the trail.”

– Guy Houston

A Yomp to remember

This year’s Cateran Yomp was a truly amazing adventure for all those involved. As we looked back on ten years of growth and change – not to mention obstacles faced during the COVID-19 pandemic! – it was incredible to find ourselves back in the Scottish wilderness, surrounded by everyone who helped us bring the Yomp to life again.

We were joined by Brenda Hale as this year’s Yomp Ambassador. Brenda lost her husband, Captain Mark Hale, in Afghanistan in 2009. Our charity supported Brenda and her daughters, Tori and Alix, during this tragic time, and they have since become passionate advocates and supporters of our charity.

Ambassador Brenda Hale walked together with participants (Ed Smith Photography).

“This was my first Yomp and the motivation, determination and enthusiasm of the participants has been truly inspiring. It’s also been both emotional and uplifting sharing my own story and I’d like to thank all of the fundraisers for their amazing support.”

– Brenda Hale, Yomp Ambassador

 

Delighted with the outcome of this year’s event, our Chief Executive Major General (Ret’d) Martin Rutledge, stated: “After a turbulent 18 months, we were delighted to celebrate the tenth ever Cateran Yomp this weekend, a tough but immensely worthwhile challenge for all.”

We would like to thank everyone who worked hard to make this year’s Cateran Yomp a reality and those of you who took part, helping us to fulfil our promise of being here for soldiers, former soldiers and their families for life.

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