Former Charlton captain Simon Webster will be preserving his 100 per cent Upbeats walk record by trekking nine miles for CACT’s Down’s syndrome programme for a fourth time on Saturday.
Webster has taken part in the walk every year since the first event in 2015 and on Saturday, April 13th he will join former teammates Robert Lee, Bob Bolder and Paul Mortimer.
This year’s walk, which starts off at the club’s Sparrows Lane Training Ground in New Eltham, is a nine-mile route to The Valley ahead of Charlton’s key game against Luton Town.
Launched by Charlton Athletic Community Trust (CACT) in 2008, the Charlton Upbeats programme for young people and adults with Down’s syndrome attracts 30-35 people to training sessions each week.
As well as giving participants the opportunity to play high-level competitive football – the Upbeats are eight times DS Active National Tournament Champions – the programme has influenced the outlook and aspirations of the Upbeats and their families and strengthened bonds and relationships between them.
Ahead of Saturday’s walk, Webster said: "I first walked the Upbeats walk four years ago with my boys, and I didn't realise how much it costs to run one of these disability teams. That's why I think it's important that we do it each year.
“A lot of the time, you don't always see the work that's done behind the scenes. The work Charlton do across CACT is fantastic. The more people we get involved, the more things are going to continue to grow.”
There is still time to sign up for the Upbeats Walk via CACT’s website. The programme is entirely funded by voluntary donations so all contributions are vital.