CATHOLIC priest, Father Elijah Fru Nde, celebrated his 40th birthday by walking the Wight and raising money for his home village in Cameroon.

Birthdays that celebrate a decade have extra special significance in the African country, so Father Elijah was keen to do something extraordinary.

He competed the 25-mile Father Elijah took part in a sponsored walk with several of his friends and parishioners from St. Saviours Church, Totland covering the 25 miles for charity from the Yarborough Monument, Culver Down to Totland.

The group stopped for lunch at Verbun Dei, Carisbrooke where they were joined by another four people including Father Emmanuel from Newport.

Also on the walk was Lady Sally Grylls, one of the sponsors. She got everyone in a good mood with her birthday wishes, written on paper and clipped on to her top.

The money raised will fund a 3kw off-grid solar panel system for village water, and to help build a water pump.

The village was affected by ongoing civil war.

The walk was organised by Douglas Pollard, a passionate walker, who acted as guide for the day.

Parishioners welcomed them at several stops and provided encouragement and refreshments, and at the end there was a finale ribbon and Champagne.

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