On 30th September, seven former and serving personnel will embark on a nine week march across Britain to raise money for nine military and emergency service charities. The journey will begin at the Royal Navy Headquarters Whale Island and finish at the same location in Portsmouth on Armistice Day.

Brainchild of AB James Mazzoni-Dalton, currently serving at DMS Whittington; the ‘Yompathon’ team is made up of personnel based all over the UK, serving the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force as well as the Police, Ambulance and Fire services.

The team will march relay-style for twelve hours a day, through three countries, 14 national parks and 40 counties across the United Kingdom. Each day they will march a minimum of 48 miles aiming to maintain an average pace of 15 minutes per mile, with each member of the team completing eight or more miles before handing over a 25kg Burgen relay style.

Mazzoni-Dalton says of the challenge:

“I came up with the idea of the Yompathon because I feel so strongly about wanting to help both former and serving members of the Armed Forces and Emergency Services suffering from mental health challenges. The charities I’ve chosen to support are close to my heart: I was in the British Army for more than 17 years and I’m currently serving with the Royal Navy with aspirations of becoming a Medical Assistant in the Submarine Service. I cannot wait to embark on this challenge, while losing a few toenails along the way, for such a worthwhile cause.”

The Yompathon, named after the military term “YOMP”, which stands for “Your Own Marching Pace”, aims to raise money and awareness for mentally wounded veterans suffering from mental health challenges. It is raising money for SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity, Royal Navy & Royal Marines Charity, First Light Trust, All Call Signs, The Ambulance Staff Charity, Police Care, Fire Fighters Charity, NHS Charities Together and Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

Learn more about the Yompathon