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Route change for Waterloo Uncovered Rock challenge

Pic by Eyleen Gomez

In a bid to conquer both the Rock and some trauma experienced in their roles within the military a number of veterans will take part in a Rock relay run this October.

Joined by a number of civilians the veterans will undertake a gruelling 12-hour relay up and down the 1,398 ft high Rock of Gibraltar, all to raise money for other veterans through veteran support charity Waterloo Uncovered.

The Rock Relay Run will coincide with Trafalgar Day.

The route was originally meant to start from the Alameda Gardens, however, due to road closures on the route up the relay teams will now complete the shorter distance from the Pillars of Hercules to O’Hara’s Battery more often.

Leading them is REME and Royal Signals veteran Ben Mead, who was previously stationed in Gibraltar and has completed tours of the former Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, and Iraq.

Mr Mead first joined the Waterloo Uncovered team in 2018 as a participant on the charity’s Excavation Programme, and has since worked his way up to become a valued staff member, serving as the charity’s Quartermaster for their annual excavations.

“The Rock Relay Run has been years in the making, and it’s finally all coming together,” he said.

“We’ve got a fantastic team representing all the Armed Forces, veterans and serving personnel, and the Royal Gibraltar Regiment. There’s a big challenge ahead of us, but everyone is united in wanting to raise funds for a fantastic charity that supports veterans like us.”

Some of the team of 10 taking on the challenge will include personnel from the Royal Air Force, Royal Navy, and Army, including Gibraltarian long-distance runner, national marathon record holder and Commonwealth Games competitor Arnold Rogers, who serves in the Royal Gibraltar Regiment.

All money raised from this incredible challenge will help fund Waterloo Uncovered's five unique veteran support programmes, which combine archaeology and military history with veteran care and recovery, designed to support those who have served their country when they need it the most and help veterans find peace from war.

“Gibraltar’s connection with the British Armed Forces goes back 300 years, and the Rock is an iconic part of the experience of being stationed there – climbing it is a rite of passage,” said Mark Evans, CEO of Waterloo Uncovered.

“We can’t think of a better way for veterans to give back to other veterans than by climbing the rock to raise funds for our life-changing veteran support programmes. We’re extremely grateful to the runners and everyone who has supported the run so far. It’s going to be incredible.”

The Waterloo Uncovered Gibraltar Rock Relay Run will start at the Pillars of Hercules and end at O’Hara’s Battery, with pairs running up and down in turn. The team will start the relay at 6am and will continue the challenge for the next 12 hours for an estimated 6pm finish.

Those who live locally are encouraged to visit the Rock to cheer on the team.

Funds will be raised on the Rock Relay Run JustGiving page. To learn more and support the challenge, please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/gibraltar

The Rock Relay Run is supported by the Royal Gibraltar Regiment, the Gibraltar Tourism Board, the Gibraltar Chronicle, the Gibraltar Sport and Leisure Authority, AADS, the Gibraltar Tea Company, the Hunter Group and the Gibraltar Nature Reserve, with travel assistance provided by EasyJet.

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