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6 November 2013

CAVC Carpentry students Walk on Wales to raise money for Welsh veterans

A group of Pathways to Apprenticeships Carpentry students from Cardiff and Vale College has raised more than £700 for Welsh combat veterans by volunteering to take part in Walk on Wales during their half term break.

They joined one of the final stages of the walk around the entire coastal path of Wales. The students walked from Porthcawl to Dunraven Bay.

The students raised more than £700 in sponsorship money between them as part of the Community Participation module of their Welsh Baccalaureate.

Walk on Wales comprised 11 relay teams, the first of which set off in the summer. The teams walked the entire Welsh Coast Path in a bid to raise £1m for the Welsh Guards Afghanistan Appeal and Combat Stress.

The teams carried a specially commissioned silver baton inscribed with the names of the 50 Welsh Guardsmen who have died in action since the end of the Second World War.

One of the students who took part was 16-year-old Alex Vickery from Llanrumney. “It’s good to do something for the veterans,” Alex said. “One of my neighbours was in the Falklands. I’m taking part because it’s something I think is important.”

The PTA Carpentry group, who are based at the College’s Dumballs Road campus, have carried out a range of activities relating to the Falklands Conflict. They are also making clocks from sustainable products for each team member that took part in Walk on Wales who walked the full 870 miles for the cause. Dumballs Road Campus Manager Kevin Robinson also represented the College, and walked 268 miles.

Last year the students used wood reclaimed from the refurbishment of Penarth Pier to make crosses to commemorate each of the Falklands’ 258 victims – and each student researched the story behind the person whose cross they were making.

Dumballs Road Campus Manager Kevin Robinson and Construction Lecturer Steve Young took the crosses out to the Falkland Islands in March this year and placed them at the Memorial Wood at Stanley with the help of local Cub Scouts. The students had also raised enough money to pay for a Falklands veteran to accompany Kevin and Steve on their visit to make the 20th anniversary of the Conflict.

Before the students set out on their leg of Walk on Wales, ex-Welsh Guardsman and Falklands veteran Mark Horwood – himself a former Construction student of the College – came to CAVC to give a talk about his experiences. Mark has led two stages of Walk on Wales.

“It’s absolutely fantastic what these students have done,” Mark said. “I’m a local boy born in Cardiff and I live in Penarth. To see other local boys use the wood from Penarth Pier in this way is awesome. It’s really impressive and it really goes to show that not all kids these days are dirt bags!”