4th February, 2021

Zimbabwe to Ampleforth Challenge: Join the Abbot's Journey

Ampleforth Society

At the London Committee of the Ampleforth Society last week, in a fit of enthusiasm about the Abbatial Election, Rory Smith (H09) suggested that members of the Society could get behind Abbot Robert’s journey from the Monastery of Christ the Word in Zimbabwe to his home at Ampleforth.

Thus, an idea was born – how many OAs and friends of Ampleforth can help us cover the distance from Zimbabwe to Ampleforth, by running, walking, or cycling during the month of February? Rory has already been in touch with Ollie Brodrick-Ward (A97) in the OA Cross Country Club, the OACC and OARFC are on board too, and we’ll be spreading the word through the other OA Sports Clubs to encourage you all to get involved.

A mere 7,200 miles door-to-door, Patrick Tolhurst (C99), Society Trustee, has calculated that if 450 Society Members do 5 hours of walking each over the coming month, we’ll make it! Head of Ampleforth College, Robin Dyer, is going to cover 50 miles a week on his bike and staff who live at Ampleforth are already planning walks and runs in the Valley to do their bit. Horse riding, scooting and roller skating all count towards our total! The individuals who cover the most miles in each category will find themselves the lucky recipients of some of Ampleforth Abbey’s finest produce.

Over the weekend Abbot Robert sent in this message of thanks and support from Zimbabwe for the initiative - you can see this below. Send your pictures to societymail@ampleforth.org.uk, particularly if you can think of creative ways to do your bit, and we will keep him up to date with the journey.

To take part we’ve set up a simple solution, using Strava, for you to share your miles with us, please add the Ampleforth Zim-SHAC profile as your friend and share your completed activities with us as you go. If you would like to get involved please let us know by filling out this quick form, and we’ll keep you up to date with how our collective journey together progresses.


A Message from Abbot Robert