Off to Morocco in a Scirocco

A MEDICAL engineer from Sleaford who completed a 24-hour marathon charity drive around as many hospitals in the UK as possible has embarked on a new challenge.

Andy Ward raised 1,350 for Leukaemia Research by driving an old VW Scirocco 672 miles in 24 hours, visiting 35 hospitals. He and wife Teresa set off from Mansfield, where Andy works at the Kingsmill Hospital, and ended up in Kent.

Having completed the drive in September, his mind started working on where to take the trusty car next.

Andy, 41 was diagnosed a year ago with chronic lymphocytic leukaemia - a less aggressive form of the disease and he has vowed since to raise money for the research charity.

Andy said: "It was a matter of elimination of suggestions and a need to have a snappy title that eventually led us to our final decision Scirocco 2 Morocco."

He said things are going well with a new logo design and sponsorship now beginning to come in for the 3,500 mile round trip, aiming to pass through all the capital cities of the countries on their route from Sleaford to Kent, across on the ferry to Calais, France, Spain, Portugal, Gibraltar, over the Straits of Gibraltar and into Morocco.

Andy will be sharing the driving with workmate Gary Nelms from Chesterfield and Glen Place from Maidstone who he befriended through the VW Scirocco owners club.

He said: "We are raising money for three charities this time (Leukaemia Research, Macmillan Cancer Care and the Lincs and Notts Air Ambulance) and we have three web pages online so that folks can sponsor whichever one or two they like."

Andy estimated fuel being the biggest cost at over 300 in the five to six day trip down to Africa. He said: "Morocco is unknown territory as none of us have been to Africa."

They are going to tow a trailer converted from the back end of another Scirocco to add novelty value.

Andy said: "We will be taking some spares, but to be honest it will always be the bit you didn't bring that lets you down."

They will be leaving on September 6 to avoid the highest temperatures although it will still be hot with three men in a car for a week: "I expect to lose a bit of weight," said Andy.

lYou can read Andy's blogs at www.sleafordstandard.co.uk