CRAVEN and Pendle Samaritans are due take part in a fundraising 26-mile walk on Sunday on the same day as the world-famous London Marathon.

The 'Balloon of Hope' walk will start in Kelbrook at 6am and follow a route taking in Earby, Barnoldswick and Foulridge before heading off to Colne, Nelson, Burnley and finally, Rawstenstall.

The idea of volunteer, Meg Davey, it will raise money and awareness for Pendle, Burnley, Craven and Rossendale Samaritans.

The charity hopes people will join its volunteers along the route for as far as they feel able. Listening volunteers from the branch will also be walking some parts offering a listening ear to those who have something on their mind and need to talk.

Meg said: "I’ve been overwhelmed by the support of fellow Samaritan volunteers, friends and family. It truly demonstrates how deeply we all care about the cause and ensuring Samaritans continues to be there for anyone who needs someone to listen.

"The ‘Balloon of Hope’ inspirational route was the idea of my good friend Sophie Waiting with whom I’ve walked, talked and raised awareness and funds previously about Samaritans and mental health crisis over several years."

Dale Hannah, branch director for Pendle said "Meg and her team have done a fantastic job at arranging a unique walk that will raise awareness of the important work we do at Pendle Samaritans, as well as hopefully raise some much-needed funds for the branch.

"It costs £60,000 per year to keep Pendle Samaritans going and we are always very grateful for the support we receive. The Balloon of Hope walk is also a great opportunity for the community to come together and walk in solidarity. The Samaritans receives a call for help every 10 seconds - spreading the word is vital to the work we do."

Any money raised by those walking or collected on route will be used by Samaritans to provide support to those over the telephone or in outreach activities in the local communities.

Donations can be made at: