HAWKSFORD International is backing former infantry soldier Lee Crow in his challenge to march 100 miles around the island to raise money for Holidays for Heroes Jersey.

The La Moye prison officer, who joined the 1st Battalion the Princess of Wales’s Royal Regiment in 2000, has seen first hand the effects that injuries sustained on the frontline can have on soldiers and their families, having served two tours of duty, one in Kosovo in 2002 and a second in Iraq in 2004.

Holidays for Heroes Jersey is a local charity which aims to provide a week-long holiday to any past or present member of HM Forces injured while on active duty. Mr Crow hopes to raise £6,000, which will cover the cost of bringing at least 10 families to visit Jersey.

‘Many of the injured men and women who have already been brought to the island for a holiday with their family through Holidays for Heroes Jersey have described their time in Jersey as “life changing”,’ said Mr Crow, 26.

Mr Crow will begin his grueling challenge at midnight on Friday 11 March dressed in full combat gear and carrying a 30lbs pack – the same weight as a soldier on patrol on an operational tour. He hopes to complete the non-stop 100-mile walk by 2pm on Sunday 13 March outside the Royal Yacht Hotel, St Helier.

Mr Crow said he had set himself an ambitious target but was determined to succeed.

‘I know that walking continuously for 100 miles in full combat gear will be hard going, but what is a few blisters and a pair of sore legs when it means the raising of funds to enable military and ex-military men and women who have been injured while on active duty to visit Jersey with their families,’ he said.

‘A holiday in Jersey for many of the men and women is something they can only dream of, but thanks to Holidays for Heroes Jersey, they and their families can experience the hospitality our island has to offer, and some are able to take part in sporting activities while they are here.’

Mr Crow is currently a member of staff in the Air Training Corps No. 7 Overseas (Jersey) Squadron and will be helped by the staff and cadets during the weekend of his challenge as he makes his way from one checkpoint to another.

‘We are delighted to be able to support Lee in his 100-mile walk to raise funds for Holidays for Heroes Jersey. It is thanks to the efforts of individuals like Lee that the charity is so well supported and can provide military and ex-military men and women who have been injured while on active duty the opportunity to visit our beautiful island with their family. We wish Lee the best of luck in his challenge,’ said Peter Murley, chief executive, Hawksford International. or by sending cheques, made payable to Holidays for Heroes Jersey, to: C/O The Treasurer, Point West, Le Chemin Des Monts, St Ouen Jersey JE3 2GT.

Anyone who is interested in providing Lee Crow with a donation is asked to make their contribution via PayPal on the Holidays for Heroes Jersey website at www.h4hjersey.org.je