Trekkers prepare to find Lost City in Colombia

A group of intrepid trekkers will be hiking through the tropical rainforest in Colombia to support Stars Appeal projects supporting patients across Salisbury Hospital.

The 34 fundraisers, aged from 80 to 23, are making final preparations for their walking adventure to the 1500-year-old Lost City of Teyuna.

They will trek for up to 12-hours a day in around 30 degrees heat and 90 per cent humidity, staying in simple communal bunkhouses. And to reach the Lost City they will have to climb 1,200 ancient stone steps.

To prepare for their challenge the trekkers have been doing 10-12 mile walks every weekend.

For three-time cancer survivor Colin Ford, from Salisbury, this will be his second Stars Appeal trek after trekking to Petra in 2022. He said: “During my treatment I have had more than my fair share of opportunity to benefit from the many facilities funded by the Stars Appeal. These include CT scanners, MRI scanners, specialist observation machines and equipment on the Pembroke Suite and Urology Department and the free Wi-Fi and tea and coffee stations on the wards. There’s no doubt the work of the charity made the care I’ve received even better.”

He will be joined by first time trekkers, Dr Helena McKeown and her husband Peter Ewing, pictured below (left), from Harnham. 

Local GP Helena said: “It’s brilliant to be raising money for the Stars Appeal. I’ve had four children at Salisbury Hospital as well as having emergency procedures and referrals where I’ve received fantastic care. I have a lot to thank them for.”

Helena could have been forced to give up her job as a GP after a rare complication caused after breaking her finger 10 years ago left her unable to use her right hand.

“I would have had to retire early,” admits Helena, a GP for over 30 years. “I have the hospital and their staff at the fracture clinic and occupational therapy to thank for getting my hand working again and enabling me to return to the job I love.”

For Jayne Prigent, from Wilton, the owner of JASHAIRGroup, this is her fifth trek for the Stars Appeal and her first time trekking with her daughter Alice. They will be trekking as a thank you, to the hospital and Stars Appeal for the care their family has received over the years. Jayne and Alice pictured middle.

The trekkers set off on April 20. All of them have paid for their own trek costs and together hope to raise more than £50,000.

If you would to make a donation to support the trekkers please get in touch with us by calling 01722 429005 or email

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