WATCH: Walker finishes epic canal journey in Leamington

An 83-year-old walker finished a 125-mile trek along the Grand Union Canal in Leamington last week.

Monday, 8th October 2018, 11:03 am
Updated Monday, 8th October 2018, 11:09 am
Bryan Ward, 83, completed his walk at the Clemens Street bridge over the Grand Union Canal

Bryan Ward, from Coventry, decided to take on the challenge as a way of proving to himself that he could do it in his old age and after recent health problems.

He split the journey up into different sections over 17 days, and news of his journey quickly spread across social media. Bryan admitted he became a bit of celebrity on the canals as he continued his walk.

Bryan headed all the way down to Paddington with help from his friend John Kelly who would give him lifts to the start points of each section and pick him up at the end.

Bryan Ward, 83, completed his walk at the Clemens Street bridge over the Grand Union Canal

After reaching Paddington, Bryan decided to finish the final leg of the walk closer to home.

And on Friday October 5, Bryan walked from Stockton to the bridge over the canal in Clemens Street to complete his journey. He enjoyed a cold glass of orange juice at nearby cafe Procaffeinate to celebrate.

He said: "Looking back, it's a bit of an achievement. It was determination, drive, and meeting people that helped me.

"I met an enormous amount of people along the way. When I started walking, narrowboats would go by and people would say 'hello Wardy!' and 'are you the walker?' and then you get invited onto boats for tea and cake."

Although Bryan felt the walk was a personal challenge, he hoped he proved to others that they are never too old to achieve their goals.

He added: "I don't know if I've inspired people, but if I can do it, they can."

Some of Bryan's friends were at the Clemens Street bridge to greet him as he finished.

One of them, Lindsey Buss, said: "I walked with him for a short time (along his journey) and I was overwhelmed by his dedication.

"He very much wanted to finish, come what may. I was really impressed."