Non-stop fundraisers with a combined age of 155

These two ladies may have a collective age of 155, but that didn't stop them walking nine miles non-stop for charity.

Doris Alexander and Joan Penlington pounded the streets for The Mad Hatters Tea Party – a special event for children battling life-threatening illnesses.

The determined duo took just two hours and 45 minutes to walk from Bedhampton to the Spinnaker Tower at Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth, to raise cash for the cause.

Joan, 73, a grandmother-of-10, from Bedhampton, said: 'I feel it is good to do something for them. It was no bother at all.

'You are grateful that your kids and grandchildren are well and not in that position and it is nice that we can put something in the pot for their parties.'

The pair learned of the Mad Hatter parties through the Havant and District Fuchsia Club, which has made it their official charity.

They got chatting to party organiser Malcolm Drew and knew they wanted to help out.

So far the ladies have racked up over 400 in sponsorship from the walk and the money is still rolling in.

Their route took them through Havant Road, Cosham, Hilsea, Portsmouth city centre and through to Gunwharf.

Doris, 82, a grandmother-of-two, from West Leigh, who also took part in the Race For Life this year, said: 'We walked quite quickly. It wasn't hard we just enjoyed it.

'I started doing charity walks when my husband died, to pay something back. I used to do it for the League of Friends and then the club made The Mad Hatters Tea Party our charity so I said we'd do it for them.

'I think people are getting a bit tired of us saying "give us your money!"

'I'll give myself until I'm 85 and then take each year as it comes.'


The Mad Hatters Tea Party has ran annually for the last eight years.

Organiser Malcolm Drew set up the event when his daughter was diagnosed with leukaemia.

After she made a full recovery, Mr Drew wanted to organise a party for other children from the Portsmouth area who bravely fought cancer and other illnesses.

Through the parties he has been able to raise funds for vital equipment for the children's wards at Southampton General Hospital and Portsmouth's St Mary's Hospital.

Mr Drew also arranges trips for children in the hospital and hopes to send a child from a children's cancer ward to DisneyWorld Florida soon.

For more information on the parties go to