A SON is tackling a gruelling charity walk in memory of his father.

Gary Rushworth is following Wainwright’s Pennine Journey, a route of about 250 miles.

He set off from Settle on Monday, heading north to Hadrian’s Wall and Hexham.

The aim is to be back in Settle next Thursday (Oct 4).

Gary’s marathon effort – in support of Alzheimer’s Research UK – is in tribute to his dad John ‘Jack’ Rushworth, who died last year.

John was born in Keighley in 1925 and brought-up in the town.

He later moved to Carlisle and became head of motor engineering at the city’s technical college.

Dementia affected him in his latter years, and he had been in a nursing home since 2014.

“His condition also had a profound effect on the family – with visiting him in the home being limited to looking at old photographs, listening to music or going through his scrapbook,” said Gary, 61.

“But there were happy times, such as Christmases and celebrating his 90th birthday when the family enjoyed his laughter and smiles.”

Before setting off, Gary said he was hugely looking forward to the walk.

“I have walked in Alfred Wainwright’s footsteps many times – completing his 214 fells of the Lake District, the coast-to-coast and the Pennine Way,” he added.

“It was while on a training walk for the latter last year, as I sat on a seat which commemorates Wainwright’s Pennine Journey, I took the decision to make it a memory walk to mark its 80th anniversary.

“When my father died it was only natural for me to remember him in this walk by raising funds to tackle the illness that blighted the last years of his life.”

Gary hopes to raise £500.

He set-up an online fundraising page, at justgiving.com/fundraising/garyspenninejourney, which has so far coined-in over £400.