RELENTLESS rain couldn’t dampen the spirits of Tarporley residents as they turned out to give wounded servicemen a heroes’ welcome.

Villagers gathered in High Street on Friday night to cheer on a team of 10 servicemen and support crew as they travelled through Tarporley on a replica First World War horse-drawn ambulance as part of the £1m charity challenge – Horses Help Heroes.

The world record attempt for carriage driving requires the group to travel 1,000 miles non-stop from Land’s End to John O’Groats in just 10 days.

The team, who set off on Tuesday, June 21, arrived in Tarporley on Friday at about 9.15pm. They completed the challenge yesterday.

The Tarporley Brass Band entertained the crowd under cover outside the pub for over two hours as the travelling crew were held up in Whitchurch due to a problem with the horses.

When they arrived, some members of the team stayed to enjoy a reception in The Swan Hotel’s historic Hunt Room.

Tarporley Hunt Club honorary secretary Bill Spiegelberg said: “The people of Tarporley were magnificent. They were so generous. so far it has raised £3,000 with probably more donations to come. It’s amazing.”

The challenge aims to raise a total of £1m for Help for Heroes, which supports wounded servicemen and women.

The crew included NHS paramedic Jacks El Tawil, from Wiltshire, who helped to mentor members of the Armed Forces in front line first aid, and Matt Wilson, who lost his left leg two years ago in a roadside bomb blast in Afghanistan.