AN INJURED serviceman who was told he would never walk again reached Chester almost halfway through a 2,012 mile walking challenge.
Phil Packer MBE, a former British provost officer, had already walked 963 miles of his epic BRIT 2012 Challenge walk, when he arrived at the University of Chester last Wednesday.
Phil suffered a severe spinal cord injury in Iraq in 2008 and was told he was unlikely to walk again. According to Dr Angela Gall, spinal injury rehabilitation consultant at the London Spinal Injury Centreeight to 10 miles a day is the equivalent of a marathon-distance effort for Phil. The self confessed ‘adrenalin junkie’ walked four miles of the university campus to prove that ‘anything is possible,’ in line with the motto of his charity – the British Inspiration Trust (BRIT).
Packer’s aim is to raise £15 million to build the BRIT Centre of Inspiration for young people facing adversity.
Vice-chancellor of the University of Chester professor Tim Wheeler, said: “We were very honoured to welcome Phil Packer to the University of Chester. He is an inspiration to so many people and really does demonstrate that ‘anything is possible’. We hope he enjoyed his visit to the campus and we wish him the very best of luck with the rest of his challenge.”
Phil will reach the half-way mark of his challenge tomorrow when he will launch an appeal to businesses to pledge either £10,000 for the capital build or £5,000 for specialist equipment to make the BRIT Centre of Inspiration a reality.
He said: “This is about providing a physical legacy for our young people who face their darkest times.”
Schools, colleges and universities can show their support by registering for the BRIT 2012 Challenge atwww.britishinspirationtrust.org.uk/HOME.
Phil will carry the Olympic flame on the day before the London 2012 Olympic Games Opening Ceremony.