Thousands of walkers stepped out on the Markovitz Sparkle Night Walk for Ashgate Hospicecare - raising a phenomenal £200,000 for the Chesterfield charity.
Jake Quickenden, winner of Dancing on Ice 2018 and this year’s Markovitz Sparkle Night Walk star, who performed live on the main stage and led the countdown to the 10km challenge, said: “It was an absolute privilege to perform at this year’s Markovitz Sparkle Night Walk. The atmosphere was incredible and it was amazing to see the sea of pink flashing bunny ears!
“I know from personal experience how local hospices can make a huge difference to those with a life-limiting illness and their families, and to raise over £200,000 for Ashgate is just fantastic. Well done to every one of you involved, you all looked amazing and did so well!”
Janette Gilbert, from Chesterfield, said: “What an amazing night! It’s the first time I’ve participated in this Sparkle Walk, and what a well organised event it was too!
The night was electric, and we enjoyed it every step of the way. We’re really looking forward to next year’s Sparkle Walk, and I’m sure it will be as phenomenal as it was on Saturday. Congratulations and well done to all who participated, you all deserved your medals!”
Colin Boynton, who lives in Buxton, said, “This was my first Sparkle Night Walk and I absolutely loved it. I’ve already signed up to next year’s! I decided to do the walk this year because my husband, Frank, received a cancer diagnosis last year and unfortunately he died very soon after that so we didn’t have time to benefit from Ashgate’s services. However, I was offered bereavement counselling by the Hospice which I found to be really helpful. The Hospice do a fantastic job of looking after the community and I think it’s amazing to see us all come together to support each other. The event was a lovely way to remember my husband, plus it’s great to know I’m helping more people to access the Hospice’s services.”
Dianne Whyman, from Chesterfield, said, “We only lost our Mum on Thursday and so we are making the Sparkle Night Walk our anniversary night as it’s a great way for us to come together and celebrate her life. Well done to everyone involved!”
A number of local entertainment companies and local businesses all added to the event with an array of performances and giveaways. There was also a memory wall where many walkers shared their reasons for walking, as well as decorating their t-shirts with photos and memories of their loved ones who they were walking in memory of.
Stewart Oldham, from Chesterfield who volunteered at the event, said: “What an inspiring night! I loved volunteering at such an amazing event seeing so many people all walking to support Ashgate Hospicecare. I was touched by the many people sharing their stories of loved ones who were cared for by the Hospice and many others who know the value of the care provided at the Hospice and in the community. Well done to each and every one of you! Hope to see you all next year.”
The money raised from the Markovitz Sparkle Night Walk will go towards providing vital care across North Derbyshire and the High Peak and Dales. The Hospice provides its services free of charge to patients with any life-limiting illness, and extended support to patients’ families.