Southampton accountants limber up for South Downs Way charity challenge

RSM Southampton charity walk

A team of over 50 walkers from the Southampton office of RSM plus clients, friends and family are hoping to raise more than £10,000 for charity by completing the entire South Downs Way.

The team plans to tackle the 100 mile walk over seven days starting on the 14 May. Leading from the front will be the firm’s office managing partner John Taylor. He will be joined by five other partners, and around 45 staff and clients including Craig Ward of Handelsbanken, David Bickford of Penningtons Manches and Patrick Trant of Trant Engineering.

The aim is to raise vital funds for the Stroke Unit at Southampton General Hospital in recognition of the care provided by the staff on Ward F8 to RSM Director David Green.

David suffered a stroke on 28 November 2014 at the age of 44, losing all of the movement on the left side of his body below the neck. Over the subsequent two months of intensive physio and occupational therapy, David successfully relearned how to sit, stand and walk and regained the movement in his left arm and hand, ultimately allowing him to return to playing the piano and typing with both hands. While his recovery is ongoing, he was able to return to work in RSM’s restructuring practice in May 2015.

John Taylor, Office Managing Partner at RSM in Southampton said:

‘Completing this challenge is all about trying to raise as much money as we can for the Stroke Unit in Southampton and to spread the word about the great work they do. It’s our way of thanking all the team there for the exceptional care they provided to David and to support them in continuing their work in the future. We are also incredibly grateful that so many of our staff and clients have agreed to give up their time and energy to raise money for such a worthy cause.’

David Green said:

‘Recovering from a stroke has been a very tough battle, but the care that I received from the therapists and nursing staff in Ward F8 was outstanding. However, it is clear that the Stroke Unit needs better equipment. Caring for a stroke patient is a labour intensive job, often involving heavy lifting, so I am hoping that the monies raised will enable the Unit to invest in an additional hoist and a shower chair to make life much easier for the staff. The equipment currently available to the therapy staff makes it necessary for patients to learn to walk in public areas of the hospital and a walking treadmill with a hoist would greatly facilitate patient rehabilitation.’

The South Downs Way runs for 100 miles, stretching over a large area of outstanding natural beauty between Winchester and Eastbourne. While John Taylor, David Bickford and Craig Ward plan to complete the entire course, other participants will walk on individual days throughout the week. The team expects to reach journey’s end on 20 May by which time they hope to have reached their target of £10,000. One of RSM’s clients, Masuri, has supported the fundraising efforts by supplying the walkers’ team t-shirts.

For more details on the event and to donate to the Southampton Hospital Charity, visit