As News Shopper's finest staff prepare to join hundreds of walkers on a magical night time walk through the striking urban landscapes of London and into the gorgeous countryside of Kent, we explain why the fundraising event is so important. DAN KEEL reports.

News Shopper has joined forces with children's charity Widehorizons to launch an event which will bring smiles to the faces of readers in Lewisham, Greenwich, Bromley, Bexley and north Kent while raising vital money for the area's youngsters.

Charity Widehorizons provides life-changing adventures for children and young people.

Currently, 80 per cent of people in the UK live in urban areas meaning many are becoming disengaged with the natural world around them.

Widehorizons offers day visits and residential courses to schools. Additionally, they also offer an Outreach Programme where Widehorizons’ tutors bring adventure to schools, using even the smallest of outdoor spaces to help children learn.


- 35 per cent of children have never been to the countryside (Source: Widehorizons survey of 2,175 schoolchildren)

- One in three children cannot identify a magpie and half cannot tell the difference between a bee and a wasp, yet nine out of 10 recognise a Dalek (Source: National Trust, 2008)

- 32 per cent have never climbed a tree (Source: Play England)

News Shopper:

- Only 47 per cent of children can correctly identify a barn owl (Source: National Trust, 2008)

- Britain’s 11-15-year-olds spend around half their waking lives in front of a screen (Source: Sigman, A, 2008)

- One in seven of London’s families have not made a single visit to a natural place over the course of a year (Source: London Sustainable Development Commission, 2011)

- Child psychologist Aric Sigman found that children exposed to the outdoors improved their awareness, reasoning and observational skills; did better in reading, writing, maths, science and social studies; were better at working in teams; and showed improved behaviour overall (Source: Sigman, A, 2007)


Walkers who sign up will have a choice of a 25km or 50km event with hundreds of florescent arrows showing you the way along the carefully planned route.

Meanwhile, everyone will be treated to soup and bread rolls at the half-way point and a hot breakfast on the finish line.

Date: Saturday June 21

Time: Registration from 6.30pm Walks start at 7.45pm in Eltham and 11.30pm in Horton Kirby

Distance: 25km (5-6hrs) or 50km (10-12hrs)

Start location: Eltham or Horton Kirby (near Dartford)

News Shopper:

Finish Location: Horton Kirby (near Dartford) or Wrotham, Kent Registration opens from 6.30pm.

Minimum Age: 16

Visit or to keep up-to-date on the event's progress.

Facebook: Twitter: @Widehorizons_uk HOW DO I REGISTER?



Call: 0845 600 65 67

Cost: £10 registration fee. £90 minimum fundraising