Memory Walk participant plans to walk the 7 hills of Edinburgh for the Big Weekend

Paul Allison is walking the 7 hills of Edinburgh over Alzheimer Scotland’s Memory Walk Big Weekend on 19th and 20th September, in memory of his beloved mum Brenda.

Edinburgh is fortunate to have 7 hills on its doorstep; Corstorphine, Craiglockhart, Braids, Blackford, Castle Rock, Calton Hill and Arthur's Seat. Paul aims to complete the first 4 on Saturday morning, he’ll then conquer Castle Rock and Calton Hill in the evening before concluding his Memory Walk on Sunday morning by climbing Arthur’s Seat.

Paul’s inspiration comes from his mum, Brenda Allison, who sadly died in March after living with dementia for many years. Brenda lived in Stranraer, Paul's hometown.

“My mum was diagnosed with mixed dementia aged 68 in early 2013. Thereafter, from 2015, in the best of local care in her hometown, literally 400 yards from her own home, at Thorneycroft in Stranraer, Brenda died in late March 2020. 

Mum loved life as a busy mum of two boys, working as a cheery and very friendly school dinner lady in her prime during the 1980s. My mum loved her garden, and all things flowering and requiring planting... a knack of which I have happily inherited.”

Paul tells us that Brenda was a fit and active woman who enjoyed cycling and long walks across South West Scotland with her loyal (ferociously protective!) companion Jock, the West Highland Terrier.

Brenda and Jock

After retiring, Brenda volunteered in her local charity shop. Remembering her personality fondly Paul shares:

“Mum always had a smile and loved a joke with a wicked sense of humour, often at her own expense. She had no filter and told people how things were... she called a spade a spade!  Down to earth with no airs or graces whatsoever, proud of her rural upbringing in a post-war era of the 1950s and thereafter.

In late 1988/early 1989, mum proudly worked for D&G Council in Lockerbie to help 'feed and water' the police and authorities who arduously dealt with the aftermath of the Lockerbie Disaster of 21st Dec 1988. No Xmas Dinner for our family that year but a special recognition from the Secretary of State for Scotland for mum!

The picture of her on a rope swing in her 50s just sums up her zest for life.”

With an ambitious target of £500, Paul hopes to also receive match funded from his employer to double his donations. You can support Paul to reach his target by donating to his JustGiving page.

Brenda on swing

Join Paul and many others for the Memory Walk Big Weekend; your walk, your way.