Police officers complete fund-raising Cheviots challenge

Participants in the 30-mile Cheviots challenge.
Participants in the 30-mile Cheviots challenge.

Eight Northumbria Police officers have completed a 30-mile challenge only attempted by the likes of the Royal Marine Commando units.

The challenge, nicknamed “Cops 30 miler”, replicated the infamous 30 mile trek across Dartmoor that Royal Marines recruits must complete before being awarded their sought-after green beret.

Two charities will benefit from the participants' endeavours, with funds split between the Care of Police Survivors charity (COPS), along with the Royal Marines Charitable Trust Fund (RMCTF).

As part of a 34-strong group from across the UK, the officers set out from Kirknewton at the edge of the Northumberland National Park.

The route took them round the Cheviot itself before they crossed the finish line in Alwinton just after 4.30pm, with the trek taking nine hours 36 minutes to complete.

To make the challenge even more enduring, each participant carried around 40lbs or 18kg in their marines-style bergen bag throughout the event.

Chief Inspector Lee Gosling, one of the founders of the event now in its second year, said: "I'm proud to see Northumbria officers stepping up to such a big challenge in aid of two incredible serviceperson charities.

"They have trained incredibly hard for this alongside their regular officer duties, which is no mean feat.

"The funds we've raised will go towards helping the families of police officers who have lost their lives on duty as well as supporting service and veteran marines."

Sergeant Martin Hopps, was just one of eight Northumbria officers who proudly completed the challenge.

Sgt Hopps, who celebrates 10 years with the force this year, said: "At the tender age of 16 I joined the Royal Marine recruits but it proved to be too much and I left not long after the first field exercise.

"I have often wondered whether I would be able to complete the 30 mile yomp and when the opportunity came up I decided to get to grips with it.

"I trained by packing my bag with 8 bags of flour each weighing 1.5kg, so after all that effort it's great to have reached the finish line and have raised a fantastic amount of funds for two worthwhile charities."

To donate to the Cops 30 miler challenge in support of the Royal Marines Chairtable Trust and the Care of Police Survivors charity visit: