Stephen 'terrified but excited' for 6,000-mile Europe charity trek

Littleport man Stephen Hughes with 1987 Porsche 944

Stephen Hughes will take on a 6,000-mile trip across Europe in a 1987 Porsche 944 for the Arthur Rank Hospice Charity which cared for his late wife Jenny (inset). - Credit: Stephen Hughes

A man who lost his wife to terminal cancer is gearing up to raise £50,000 by driving 6,000 miles across Europe in a restored 1980s sports car. 

Stephen Hughes of Littleport was working on a 1987 Porsche 944 he bought off eBay for less than £600 in 2014 after losing his wife Jenny two years ago. 

“I had this car for a while but it was broken down,” he said. 

“I was doing work on the car, which helped keep my mental health in check and something else to focus on.” 

Having previously spoken to Jenny about visiting Norway, Stephen was keen to find a challenge in Europe before he came across the Baltic Sea Circle adventure rally. 

Stephen Hughes with 1987 Porsche 944 in Littleport

Stephen will take on the Baltic Sea Circle rally challenge with friend Gemma Bullock in a 1987 Porsche 944 which he bought in 2014. - Credit: Stephen Hughes

“It was the perfect fit,” said Stephen. 

“In the rally, you have to drive a car older than 20-years-old which fitted with my car. 

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“It’s probably not the typical car you expect to see in these rallies.” 

Ahead of the challenge, Stephen has been restoring the vintage car to its former glory while looking after his three children. 

He will be accompanied by friend Gemma Bullock when they start and finish in Hamburg, Germany while travelling through the likes of Denmark and Norway to Finland and Poland. 

“I’ve never done anything like this before; I’m terrified and excited at the same time,” said Stephen. 

As well as completing the trek, Stephen and Gemma aim to raise £50,000 for the Arthur Rank Hospice Charity which looked after Jenny. 

He has had to spend many a weekend and time after work on fixing the car, which has clocked over 200,000 miles. 

Stephen Hughes with wife Jenny of Littleport

Stephen will be taking on the 6,000-mile rally challenge in memory of wife Jenny, who died two years ago after a battle with terminal cancer. - Credit: Stephen Hughes

It is an experience that Stephen hopes will help others who have experienced a similar situation to theirs, and a challenge he feels his late wife would be proud of. 

“I hope for other people who are bereaved or diagnosed with a terminal illness, the money I raise can provide that extra support,” Stephen added. 

“I think Jenny would say I’m completely mad, but I know she would be super proud of me for taking on something so challenging.” 

Stephen and Gemma start the challenge on June 19 and aim to finish by July 4.

To learn more about Stephen’s fundraising challenge and donate, visit: https://wildspiritadventure.co.uk/.