Determined Dave raises £800 for charity with tough 10-mile trek

Retired soldier Dave Cole, fundraising for VIA, at his office at Bishops Move, Ely

Retired soldier Dave Cole, fundraising for VIA, at his office at Bishops Move, Ely - Credit: Archant

A retired soldier from Soham has put his endurance to the test by strapping a 35 pound bag to his back and trekking across 10 miles of terrain – all in the name of charity.

Dave Cole, who now works as a removals manager at local firm Bishop’s Move on Lancaster Way, Ely, took the trip over to Colchester last Sunday to take part in a Paras’ 10 event.

Dave was put through his paces over 10 miles of tough terrain - including hills and mud - with his challenge made even harder by the 35 pounds he had to carry on his back.

The Colchester challenge was Dave’s fourth Paras’ 10 event, and despite saying this year’s would be his last, the former soldier has no plans of stopping his fundraising any time soon.

Dave, who completed the course in two hours and 19 minutes, said: “It was a really nice day and the weather was perfect so I was able to amble around the course.

“They modified this year’s course and there was knee-deep mud, which was great fun.

“Before the race I said this year would be my last, but I’d be lying to myself and the rest of the world if I said that now.

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“On my way round I bumped into a couple of older men who must have been in their sixties and that made me think ‘if they can keep doing it, then so can I’”

Dave ran five miles every night in preparation for the big event, and has raised over £800 for Veterans in Action – a charity close to his heart.

“Veterans in Action is actually run by one of my old friends from the army,” he said.

“They mainly work with veterans with PTSD; taking part in physical challenges and more recently they’ve begun a manufacturing facility, making cups and stuff like that, which veterans are encouraged to get involved with.

“They do some really sterling work.”

Mr Cole, who served in the army from 1980 until 1986, is now planning his next fund raising venture.

He said: “I have to be mindful of knackering my knees out, but I want to keep doing challenged like the Paras’ 10s.

“There’s a Marines 30-mile eight-hour challenge coming up that I’ve had a look at, but I’ll definitely do another Paras’ 10 event; probably in Catterick, which is a lot more hilly than the one I did in Colchester.”

For more information on Veterans in Action, visit, or to donate visit