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We’re excited to launch this year’s Walk for Wards, which is taking place on Sunday 7th July.

Our sponsored walk around the Wilton House Estate attracts thousands of participants every year.

A special launch was held at Wilton House with Stars Appeal President, the Earl of Pembroke, who was joined by some of the charity’s Hospital Ambassadors along with representatives from Salisbury Reds, who are the event’s principal sponsors.

Consultant paediatrician and Stars Appeal Ambassador, Dr Rowena Staples, said: “Every day in our Children’s Unit, Neonatal Unit and across the Hospital I see first-hand the difference the Stars Appeal makes to our patients, their families and visitors, as well as our hospital teams. From free Wi-Fi to state-of-the-art equipment such as the 2nd MRI scanner and buildings like the Breast Unit.

“Walk for Wards is the Stars Appeal’s flagship event. Each summer my colleagues and I are amazed to see the huge number of people walking in support of their hospital. It is the support of the local community that helps to make our hospital and the Stars Appeal so special. I hope to see many of you walking in the beautiful Wilton Estate in support of the Stars Appeal. You will be helping to improve the hospital experience for all. Thank you.”

A record-breaking total of £157,922 was raised at last year’s Walk for Wards, which saw over 2,000 walkers turn out to support our flagship fundraising event.

Walkers can choose from three routes including the family friendly 3k, a 5k walk or the more challenging 10k.

The walk, which is free to enter, is held by kind permission of Lord and Lady Pembroke, with support from David Huckfield and his team of marshals from Wilton Rotary Club. It also includes a free lunch and admission to the Wilton House gardens as well as the adventure playground afterwards.

Lord Pembroke said: “Walk for Wards is the most extraordinary family event, not only is it raising funds for some incredible Stars Appeal projects, but it is a really enjoyable day out with family, children, friends and colleagues. Wilton House is the most beautiful estate to host the event. All of us here love to share it. The energy of the event is extraordinary, and the atmosphere is not something anyone should miss.”

Donations from Walk for Wards help us towards our goal of raising more than £1million each year to fund projects supporting local people being treated at Salisbury District Hospital.

Projects we’re currently looking to fund include videoscopes for head and neck cancer patients, a mechanical chest compression machine, and 20 specialist cots for newborn babies on the labour and postnatal wards. These are in addition to the ongoing projects we provide which include support for patients with cancer, Stars Appeal Wi-Fi, and accommodation for the parents of seriously ill children in hospital.

Last year, donations and fundraising enabled us to provide Salisbury Hospital’s first 3D ultrasound machine, a new plastic surgery theatre with state-of-the-art equipment, and the latest baby heart monitors.

Walk for Wards is sponsored by Salisbury Reds, who have also chosen us as their chosen Charity of the Year.

All you need to do to take part in Walk for Wards is sign up in advance and commit to raising at least £20 sponsorship per person for your chosen ward or department at Salisbury District Hospital.

Pictures by Simon Ward and Spencer Mulholland. Video by Carlton Brunton. 

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