A team from the Tunbridge Wells-based law firm CooperBurnett LLP has raised more than £5,500 for Demelza – which the firm’s Partners have pound-matched, resulting in the children’s hospice charity receiving more than £11,000!

The ‘magnificent seven’ – Partners Victoria Sampson, Joseph Oates, Gemma Gillespie and Sarah Strong; Head of Accounts, Gareth Warner; Associate Solicitor, Ayla Clissold; and PA to the Commercial Property team, Hannah Mashford – conquered the ultra-marathon challenge, the Dulux Race To The King over the weekend of Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 June. This involved two ultra-marathon distances of 50km, along the Monarch’s Way from Goodwood and back again.

Three of the team Ayla Clissold, Sarah Strong and Gemma Gillespie, each individually covered an incredible 100km (62.1 miles) – with Ayla and Sarah amazingly completing that distance in one go. They set off on the morning of Saturday 17 June and arrived back at Goodwood during the early hours of Sunday 18 June.

“The ‘magnificent seven’ from TeamCB walked and ran an astonishing 500km between them,” says Partner Victoria Sampson. “That’s the equivalent of us walking to Scafell Pike from Tunbridge Wells – which a team from our firm also conquered a few years ago, as part of our Three Peaks charity challenge. I am so very grateful for every ounce of everything they put into training for and executing Race To The King!”

Adds Partner Joseph Oates, who along with Victoria Sampson, accompanied Partner Gemma Gillespie on a 50km ultra-marathon walk on Sunday: “I can honestly say that this was our hardest charity challenge we’ve attempted to date and that includes cycling from London to Paris in 24 hours. Our team had to deal with heat and humidity, hills, rain and injuries. They are, without a doubt, all legends.”

During her darkest hours, Ayla Clissold, an Associate Solicitor in the Residential Property team, said she thought about what Petra Bones, Head of Corporate Partnerships at Demelza, had said at the challenge’s launch event, about how the charity relies on donations to fund its work providing ‘extraordinary care to extraordinary children’.

“I’ve been amazed and inspired by the effort TeamCB have made for Demelza children and families,” says Petra Bones. “From the training hours and the time away from friends and family, to the blisters and injuries and, of course, the exhaustion, they have been inspiring to watch both in the lead up to and on the Race to the King weekend.  It would never cross my mind to take on such a challenge and they are all champions in my eyes!”

She continues:“The money the team have raised through their fundraising and the Partners’ matching will be put to good and urgent use, supporting children and families who desperately need help – it could fund more than 210 hours of specialist nursing care, or could more than fund a day of care at BOTH our Kent and East Sussex hospice sites!”

Adds Victoria Sampson: “While we are now coping with extreme tiredness, blisters, aching limbs and, for some, injuries, we are able to rest and return to our ‘normal’ lives. The families which Demelza supports don’t have this luxury. Our Partners here at CooperBurnett are pound-matching what’s raised and we know every penny raised makes a huge difference.”

You can still support CooperBurnett with its right royal challenge : JUSTGIVING LINK HERE