Mike is a walk leader and trainer with Healthy Stepping Middlesbrough, which is part of Walking for Health - the England wide network of health walk schemes run in partnership between the Ramblers and Macmillan Cancer Support.
Over the last twelve years, Mike has helped train hundreds of walk leaders, many of whom are also local volunteers. Throughout this time, Mike has also led hundreds of walks with his local walking group, and has organised and taken part in many community fundraising events.
Having suffered prostate cancer himself, Mike is always willing to share his experience with other walkers and trainee walk leaders. He encourages other people living with cancer to stay physically active and to live a healthy lifestyle. Mike’s enthusiasm for life is an inspiration to us all.
Q4. When did you discover the joys of walking?
As a boy of nine or ten I walked the Cleveland Hills with friends. To escape from an industrial town and walk in clean fresh air and see the natural beauty of the moorland was a great pleasure, and still is.
Q5. Why do you love walking / how has walking changed your life?
I love to be immersed in nature and admire its beauty on the moors and hills or in the countryside. It’s good for both my physical and mental health, and socially I have met and made many good friends. Perhaps the greatest pleasure for me though is sharing it with others. There is no doubt it has enriched my life, and I’m delighted that my enthusiasm is shared by my children, who now take their children walking too!
Q6. Describe your perfect walk (group walk, walking alone, where etc)
A couple of weeks ago I did a circular walk with friends starting at Hawnby on the North Yorkshire Moors. The sky was blue, the walk was on varied terrain; across the moors, through woods, over fields and down beck paths and there were magnificent displays of bluebells amidst wild garlic and other spring flowers. There were even lambs happily frolicking on the moors. Idyllic. Finally, our path led us through a woodland to bring us to a wonderful medieval church and ancient graveyard with a delightful beck with bluebells beyond.
Q7. Why should other people take up walking?
To enjoy the health benefits, see nature in the raw, make friends and share these wonders with other people!
During volunteer week we’ll be publishing interviews with our volunteer award winners, like Geoff, and you’ll be able to read them on our volunteers' week webpage.