THE sun shone on nearly 400 ramblers who put their best foot forward for the ninth consecutive ‘Walk The Wye’ charity event.

The 383 walkers came from as far afield as Bath, Birmingham and Bridgend, with some even taking on the longest 16-mile route all the way from Chepstow to Monmouth Showground, only to turn round and walk all the way back again.

Organisers Monmouth, Chepstow and Ross-on-Wye Rotary Club hope to raise around £12,000 for breast cancer research from the event, which offered seven riverside routes through fields and woodland bedecked in bluebells and flowering wild garlic.

Some walkers in the Sunday, May 14 event, entered into the fun spirit and turned out in pink outfits, with Michele Whiting dressed as a fairy winning the award for most outrageously dressed walker for the second consecutive year.

Monmouth Rotary Club president Roger Finn said: “We were very pleased with the number of walkers who joined the seven different walks between Chepstow, Monmouth and Lower Lydbrook.

“We received almost £1,000 in sponsorship money on the day, with many more walkers still collecting donations from their sponsors. It looks like being a very successful event.

“I ask everybody to give generously, to support both the walkers who made such a tremendous effort, and the breast cancer research team at Velindre Hospital.”

Walk co-ordinator, Rotarian Norman Williams, said: “It was great to see so many walkers enjoying the day, and the various walks that we’d organised.

“The unique formula of taking walkers up or down the valley by bus, and letting them stroll back to Monmouth in their own time, along the banks of the Wye, was much appreciated.”

Organisers thanked Monmouth Show Ground committee for providing the venue, H&H Motors for bus transport, Eagle Plant for site facilities, Abbey Mill for catering, M&M ices and St John’s Ambulance.

The previous eight Rotary walks have raised more than £79,000 for breast cancer research.