MORE than 1,000 moonlight walkers dressed in purple have raised a total of £210,000 for a hospice.

The Midnight Walk started at midnight on Saturday and saw 1,311 women, all wearing a custom-made purple T-shirt, follow a starlit, nine-mile route through Harrow Weald, Stanmore, Kingsbury and Kenton over the course of three hours.

It was raising money for St Luke's Hospice, in Kenton Grange, Kenton, which cares for people with cancer and other serious progressive illnesses from Harrow and Brent.

The proceedings began at 10.30pm on Friday at Harrow Leisure Centre, in Christchurch Avenue, Wealdstone, with a mass warm-up session before the stream of participants headed off along the marshalled course.

It ended there too, with the walkers enjoying a well-earned breakfast on Saturday morning.

Pam Russell, director of fundraising at the hospice, said: "It's amazing how well our Midnight Walk has taken off within our local community.

"The atmosphere is electric. The money raised has been a record amount since the event launched three years ago; it will definitely go a long way to maintaining our services, which we provide to our community free of charge."

Esther Gillham, the event organiser, added: "We want to say a big thank you to all the volunteers who helped us lead up to the night as well as on the night. Without their help, this would not be possible."

The hospice only receives a third of the revenue needed to continue its services from the government, so is reliant upon fundraising events to survive.

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