Force ten from Falkirk walking the West Highland Way in memory of their dead pal

Ten good souls with tough soles have begun their mission to strolling almost 100 miles for “Strathie and Strathcarron” over the next few days.

Strathie’s Stollers, gathered at Forth Valley College earlier this morning before setting off to Milngavie to begin their five days and four nights adventure along the world famous 96-mile trail.

It will be hard going, with hungry midges, the always unpredictable Scottish weather and now the COVID-19 restrictions to adhere to, but if the strollers start to falter along the way all they have to do is think about the two inspirations behind the endeavour.

Scott Strathie (39) died in December last year after being diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. He spent his final days being cared for in Strathcarron Hospice.

Strathie's Bog Strollers at the start of their long cash and awareness raising journey to remember their lost pal Scott Strathie, who sadly died of cancer last year

Alan Gibson, Scott’s cousin, said: “Scott was a hugely popular character and had many friends. I chatted to a few of them and we decided we wanted to do something in Scott’s memory and to also raise funds for Strathcarron Hospice where Scott spent his final days.

“So on July 31 – a day after what would have been Scott’s 40th birthday – the group, who we’ve named Strathie’s Bog Strollers, will set off and walk the West Highland Way.

“This is a challenge close to all our hearts. We want to raise money and a wee bit of awareness and appreciation for Strathcarron Hospice and the job they do helping people.”

Joining Alan on the big walk will be Alan Cramb Snr, Colin Gibson, Brian McLeish, John Malone, David Martin, Scott Paterson, John Redding, Alexander Turnbull and Colin Zandbergen.

Scott Strathie sadly died of cancer last year and now his friends and relatives are walking the West Highland Way in his memory

Alan said: “There will be some social distancing on the walk – we’ve all been told from the places we will be staying to bring our own sleeping bags. We’ve also been assured only the walkers of the West Highland Way will be staying at these venues.”

The lads were initially looking to raise around £1500, but the total is now approaching an impressive £3000 and the strollers have just set off on their journey.

Visit www.strathcarronhospice.net/fundraisers to donate to the cause.