Ludlow mum plans 100km charity walk in memory of her 'inspirational' daughter

A Ludlow mum has set herself a fundraising challenge to walk more than 100km of Offa’s Dyke in just eight days.

Sam finishing the Ridgeway walk
Sam finishing the Ridgeway walk

Di Lyle, a Ludlow town councillor since 2012, founder of the Ludlow Repair Café and published poet, will start her trek at Knighton on June 25 and is due to finish at Sedbury Cliffs, near Chepstow, on July 3.

She plans to cross the finish line on the first anniversary of her 'inspirational' daughter's death.

The walk is in memory of Ms Lyle's daughter, Sam Holland, who died, age 50, of cancer on July 3, 2021, just 11 weeks after having received her diagnosis.

“Sam was the fittest person I, and so many others, have ever known,” said Ms Lyle.

“She taught PE and was head of that department at the Blue School in Wells, in Somerset, and she exercised every day, either running, swimming, in the gym or cycling, rain or shine.

"I don’t think there was a single sport that she hadn’t tried or excelled in.”

Unfortunately the cancer spread through Sam’s body at a devastating rate, leaving the medical profession effectively running to catch up.

She was admitted to hospital in Bath in May 2021 and was transferred to St Margaret’s Hospice in Taunton in June.

Ms Lyle said the care she received there was exceptional.

During her life as a teacher and as an outstanding sportswoman, Sam had influenced and inspired many people; her pupils during her 28-year career at the school and many of their children too, as well as friends and family.

She has a dedicated tribute page on the St Margaret's Hospice’s website and her mum says the £16,000 in donations in her memory are a significant reflection of the esteem and affection in which she was, and continues to be, held.

Ms Lyle's walk is to raise money for Sam’s tribute page and for the hospice to continue to give such special care to others like Sam.

Ms Lyle said: “The picture of Sam on her tribute page is of her finishing the 100K Ridgeway Walk and that has inspired me to try to follow in my beautiful girl’s footsteps.

"I have chosen the dates of my walk so that I finish on the first anniversary of her death. I know I will be walking with her on that day.”

Anyone wishing to sponsor Di can do so by contacting her for a sponsorship form on 07786 620624, calling the Hospice direct on 01823 333822 or 01935 709485 stating what the donation is for, or visiting The Sam Holland Tribute Fund page at www.st-margarets-hospice.org.uk/tribute/Sam-Holland

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