A New Challenge

Not written much recently. Not that I’ve had nothing to write but just haven’t been able to find the words or indeed to put them in the right order. I’ve started 3 posts but never finished them. So here goes another attempt.

I’ve formed a team and from the 8th of June until the end of July my team will be walking and running virtually from Inverness down to Glasgow. A total of 288 miles. Our journey will take us to all of the Maggies centres in Scotland starting in the Highlands at Inverness moving on to Aberdeen, Dundee, Fife (Kirkcaldy), Edinburgh, Forth Valley, Lanarkshire and finally Glasgow.

For those that don’t know Maggies they are are a network of drop-in centres across the United Kingdom and Hong Kong, which aim to help anyone who has been affected by cancer. 

The Scottish registered charity which promotes, builds and runs the centres is formally named the Maggie Keswick Jencks Cancer Caring Trust, but refers to itself simply as Maggie’s. It was founded by and named after the late Maggie Keswick Jencks, who died of cancer in 1995.

Like her husband, architectural writer and critic Charles Jencks, she believed in the ability of buildings to uplift people. The buildings that house the centres have been designed by leading architects, including Frank GehryZaha Hadid and Richard Rogers.

Our start was at Maggies Highlands.

Maggie’s Highlands was built in 2005. It’s a round, sculptural building with an incredibly striking, green copper roof.

The building and its surrounding garden were designed simultaneously as a collaboration between David Page, who took the lead on the building, and our co-founder Charles Jencks, who led the garden. Their inspiration was the mitosis or division of cells, and the evocation of life that they represent.

Spiral shapes dominate the garden, with the grassy mounds and gravel shapes mirroring and complementing the shape of the building. The barriers between landscape and architecture are blurred and broken, as the spirals of time and of cell mitosis merge and mirror one another throughout. The overall effect is one of tranquillity, peace, and a sense of life at its very core.

As of this moment we are almost at Maggies Aberdeen having travelled 144km. Further updates will occur as we reach each centre.

And why are we doing this? Well to raise money obviously. In these strange and unpredictably, unprecedented times all charities need help more than ever. These centres are a godsend to those that are recovering as well as those that have recovered from cancer. A small (but vital) community within a community.

They helped greatly when my Mother-in-Law (one of my team) was going through her treatment and also afterwards. Our local centre continues to keep her out of my hair for a good part of the week (Pre-Covid) though she does sometimes rope me in to her fundraising. Twice she’s made me take pics as she’s abseiled down the Forth Bridge. And twice she’s disappointed me by using a rope. But it was daytime and I think she only uses her broomstick when it’s dark! Now it’s my turn to rope her in and as team captain I give the orders. Fat chance!

So should you wish to sponsor us the link is https://www.justgiving.com/team/Janetsjoggers

Thanking you kindly in advance


1 thought on “A New Challenge

  1. You might have ironed the t-shirt !!! Great blog Charles, we will do this and raise lots of dosh. Watch out for the wee wummin on the broomstick!!


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