Two cops will take the high and the low roads on Scotland’s most famous trail in a bid to help fund local good causes.
PCs Derek Wallace (36) and Alan Weir (55) are taking time off from their law enforcement jobs to trek the 96-mile West Highland Way.
They are setting off on Saturday, with friend Andrew Wilson (42), from Brightons, on the gruelling hike, hoping to complete it by next Thursday and bring home a tidy sum of cash for their chosen good causes.
Derek is from California and the area is part of his local beat, also taking in Avonbridge, Limerigg, Slamannan and Standburn in the Braes.
The local bobby is a well-known face on his beat and is always keen to help bring new facilities to his communities and get involved in what’s going on.
Any money he raises will be given to the Drumbowie Action Group and to help a youth club in Slamannan fund day trips and buy sports equipment for its members.
He said: “This will be the third time I’ll have done the West Highland Way so I should know my way by now. This will be Alan’s 20th time, so he’s leading the trek.
“We are well prepared for what’s ahead and hopefully we’ll raise a good amount of cash for our causes. Helping the youth in my area is very important to me both personally and professionally.
“We’ll be staying in hostels and B&Bs and hopefully doing about 16 miles a day so we can reach our target time. It’s great that we can raise money doing something that we love doing as well.”
Secretary of the Drumbowie group May Bennie has sung the praises of her local gendarme for helping the group.
She said: “Derek has been really supportive of our group, and indeed most things in the community, since he started working here.
“There is a viewing platform in Recreation Park that’s been there for about 15 years so we’re going to use the money to help regenerate it a bit and get a new bench because the park is very popular with people of all ages.”
Youth worker Louise Gray and Audrey McClure from Slamannan Community Centre are helping him raise money by distributing sponsor forms.
Audrey said: “Fundraising is going really well and the money will be used for a lot of things, including summer day trips to the beach for children who may not otherwise get to go.”
Alan and Andrew are both raising money for Strathcarron Hospice. Alan said: “Strathcarron is a great cause and needs a lot of money to survive. Everyone knows someone who has been treated there and the staff do a fantastic job.”
To donate to the fundraising trek contact Derek through the ‘My Area’ link on Central Scotland Police’s website.