A keen walker who has undergone more than 30 surgeries is taking on the hike of a lifetime to thank our NHS.

Andrew Heward, 57, of Wibsey, Bradford, will complete the 100km Yorkshire Challenge over two days next month to raise money for the Bradford Hospitals’ Charity renal fund.

Andrew has Cystinuria, caused by an inherited gene defect. The condition, which causes chronic kidney disease, is incurable, but manageable. So far, he has had more than 30 surgeries.

“I am a keen hiker, but I have never done anything like this before,” said Andrew. “I usually average 12-18 miles when I walk, but I know this will be uncomfortable. I’m looking forward to it, but I’m certainly not expecting it to be easy.”

Andrew, an industrial services engineer, said it was even more of a challenge because he was still recovering from his latest surgery, which had left him with infections.

“This seemed like a good way to say thank you. I regularly visit the Renal Unit and everyone has always looked after me. I would love the money I raise to go where it is needed the most, to support staff and buy extra equipment,” he added.

Bradford Hospitals’ Charity is the charitable arm of Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and funds projects and equipment which are over and above what the NHS provides.

Hayley Collis, Head of Fundraising for Bradford Hospitals’ Charity, said: “Thank you Andy for taking on this incredible challenge for our charity. Considering everything Andy has gone through to stay healthy, this is quite a feat and we speak on behalf of everyone in the Renal Unit when we say we are incredibly grateful. The money will be used to support other patients like Andy.”

The Yorkshire Challenge will take in the beautiful Nidderdale area in the Yorkshire Dales on 23 and 24 July.

You can support Andrew by visiting his Just Giving page at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/andy-heward

Andrew Heward

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