THE Noah’s Ark Charity is calling on the people, schools and businesses of Powys to join its Great Welsh Walk this May as it journeys through the length of the county.

Starting in Machynlleth on Saturday, May 11, and ending in Cardiff on Friday, May 17, the event is a seven day walking challenge to raise funds for Wales’ only children’s hospital.

The route follows Glyndwr’s Way through Llanidloes to Llangurig before joining the Wye Valley Path to Llyswen at the end of the fourth day. Walkers will then take on the Brecon Beacons before leaving Powys on the final journey through Caerphilly to Cardiff. Each day is a walking challenge within itself with a marked beginning and end point. This gives people the opportunity to take part for a day, the whole week or anything in between.

The Noah’s Ark Children’s Hospital for Wales receives more than 300 admissions from the area covered by the Powys Teaching Health Board each year.

The charity, which was originally set up in 2000 to raise money to build and equip the hospital, now continues to provide it with vital ongoing funding and support. The Great Welsh Walk will be the culmination of a year of activities celebrating the charity’s 18th birthday.

Noah’s Ark Charity, head of events, Linda Davies says: “Just as Noah’s Ark is a children’s hospital for all of Wales, we are a children’s charity for all of Wales. By raising money, our supporters help us to fund equipment that improves and saves the lives of thousands of children each year while enabling us to provide support services for families going through very difficult times.

"The Great Welsh Walk is an opportunity for people to take on a personal challenge but it’s also a chance to celebrate the very communities that they’ll be supporting by taking part at the same time. So it’s as good for your soul as it is for your health!”

Along the route, walkers will be joined by families who have benefitted from the hospital’s care.

Like Kieran Hamer from Llanidloes, who has been a patient of the children’s hospital since being diagnosed with a brain tumour at the age of five.

The walk has been specifically designed to travel through Llanidloes in honour and to give thanks to the town’s resident Les Jones.

Les is an ambassador of the charity and has raised many thousands of pounds in support of the children’s hospital over the years.

Local schools and businesses along the seven day route are also being asked to get involved with many already showing their support.

Linda Davies added: “Schools in Llanelwedd, Llanidloes, Rhayader and Builth Wells are raising funds, as is the NFU in Builth and Rhayader Leisure Centre.

"It’s really important to us that each day has a real community theme so we’re very much hoping that we can meet all our fundraisers and thank them personally as we walk.

"We’ll have a few well known Welsh celebrity faces with us at certain points too, so if you can’t walk with us for any reason, why not come and cheer us along and do some celebrity spotting at the same time. ”

For more information on the Great Welsh Walk, including an interactive route map and information on how to register visit