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Pennine Way pioneer helps mark golden anniversary

A keen walker featured on national television last weekend as celebrations for the 50th birthday of the Pennine Way got underway.

Terry Holden [ class of 1965], a former head boy at Roundwood Park School in Harpenden, appeared on BBC1’s Countryfile on Sunday, as he was one of the youngest ramblers to complete the trail when it first opened in 1965.

Terry, who lives in Wheathampstead, said: “I first became aware of the opening of the Pennine Way whilst walking in Derbyshire on a school trip with friend Garry Cade, during the Easter holidays in 1965, and it was then that I suggested we took up the challenge.

“Upon returning to school we soon recruited Richard Elliot and John Anstee, who were also enthusiastic, so we then immediately set about researching and  planning our adventure.”

As the group set off on their last day of their then GCE exams on June 30 and had to be home by Saturday July 17, they were tasked with walking an average of 20 miles a day, for 10 hours and for 13 days. Terry said: “We were all pretty fit and active youngsters and took the challenge in our stride. “We found the most testing parts of the trek, on our navigational skills, were tobe at both at the beginning and end of the walk.

“The whole adventure was no doubt character building and developed our confidence and many skills including teamwork and determination which helped later in life. “ Some of Terry’s fond memories of the trip documented in the boys’ itinerary, include him jumping over a wall after a seeing a cow, which his friends thought he mistook for a bull, Manchester receiving a month’s worth of rain in two days and his friend John burning his Vesta curry which he had carefully prepared for his 16th birthday.

Terry also took part in a walk at Malham Tarn in Yorkshire, set up by the National Trails for a special Walk.

By Naomi Agius Herts Advertiser [Harpenden Edition] 30th April 2015