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The Great Benidorm Drive

The heat is on for 3 brave men who have decided to take on the upcoming ‘Benidorm or Bust’ challenge as an opportunity to raise funds for St Oswald’s Hospice!

The task is a 1400 mile driving challenge that takes place from the 13th - 16th of June, which aims to not only challenge individuals on their navigational skills, but to also be an avenue to raise money for a charity. The team known as Washington Wanderers is made up of Peter Russell, John Laybourn and Peter Barnett from Tyne and Wear and we are delighted that they have chosen to support St Oswald’s Hospice.

The team will start off their journey at Dover on the 13th of June where they jump onto the ferry to start their challenge; the 3 day adventure officially starts now. To create more of a challenge the team will receive coordinates for their next check in point, as well as daily tasks ranging from dressing silly to car wrapping, which gives them a chance to win cash prizes. At the end of the challenge, grand prizes of £10,000 and a £5000 charity prize will be awarded to teams for competing in certain categories.

Peter John And Peter 11

Paying only £250 for their car, Washington Wanderers’ vehicle of choice is a 23 year old Honda Accord. Don’t worry though, there will be 4 support vehicles to help along the way for any unforeseen issues. At the end of the challenge, they have the option of either scraping the car or can extend the challenge by driving the car back, which is exactly what the team is intending to do, after a short holiday of course.

Peter Russell, Captain of Washington Wanderers, tells us more:

We heard about this challenge a while ago and we decided to get on board this year. We’re all around 70 and we’re not getting any younger so why not do it? I think our wives are a little concerned as it’s a physically demanding challenge but they understand it’s for a good cause.


You know, we’re 3 old pensioners who still have a bit of life in us. We’ve had some close friends use the services at St Oswald’s, so we wanted to give something back, and we get to have a good laugh at the same time.


As we keep saying, ‘Adventure Before Dementia’. We need to have more fun and show everyone else doing this challenge that us three septuagenarians still have something left in us.

Natalie Santamera, Fundraiser at St Oswald’s added:

We are excited to see the three gentlemen take on such a fantastic and unique challenge for St Oswald’s Hospice. Their energy and positive outlook for ‘Benidorm or Bust’ is contagious and we can’t wait to hear about their journey. The Washington Wanderers believe they will have to greatest combined age of 235 years, along with the car, and believe their years of wisdom will carry them through.


This challenge makes a great fundraiser for St Oswald’s Hospice and we can’t thank the team enough for doing something incredible for the Hospice. As a Hospice we have to raise £7.5m a year to keep our doors open, and we couldn’t do it without the support of teams like Washington Wanderers.

To sponsor the gentlemen on their greatest adventure please visit their just giving page on www.justgiving.com/fundraising/washingtonwanderers. You can also keep up to date with their journey by checking out the Wessington U3A website where the guys will hopefully be updating their progress.  

If you feel inspired and wish to find out how you can support St Oswald’s via a fundraising endeavour, please visit this link: http://www.stoswaldsuk.org/get-involved/support-us/how-can-i-help.aspx