Fundraiser to walk backwards for 100 miles in latest ‘wacky challenge’

A serial fundraiser is collecting money to fight cancer by walking backwards for 100 miles between Northampton and London.

Stuart Kettell will follow the Grand Union Canal from Braunston Marina, Northampton, to central London from Wednesday to benefit Macmillan Cancer Support.

He will use backwards-facing shoes to aid him in his challenge along with dyed green hair which he has sported on his many challenges as tribute to the green on Macmillan’s logo.

The outfit also includes a flashing indicator beacon and a loudspeaker announcing he is reversing.

Mr Kettell, whose first challenge in 2007 was a flight around the UK coast in a flex-wing microlight aircraft, said: “You’re using muscles that you don’t usually use, and the body isn’t used to walking backwards.”

The father-of-four will pass through Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire before he reaches the capital.

Mr Kettell has raised nearly £60,000 for the charity over 14 years by completing an annual “wacky challenge”.

The feats included spending a week suspended in the air by helium balloons, pushing a Brussels sprout up Mount Snowdon with his nose, and cycling from John O’ Groats to Land’s End in a pedal-powered bathtub.

Mr Kettell will be joined by Norman Wooley, 85, who will captain the 60ft narrowboat he will sleep in during his journey.

Mr Wooley will have his own challenge navigating the 102 locks on the route Mr Kettell is walking.

Ellen Finn, senior relationship fundraising manager for Macmillan, said: “Almost of all of Macmillan’s income is generated by fundraising activity and the demand on Macmillan’s services has never been greater.

“Every step that Stuart takes, and every lock Norman passes, raises money for Macmillan and helps us to do whatever it takes to support people living with cancer within the West Midlands.

“We couldn’t be prouder of Stuart and Norman for what they are doing to support us.”