Raising money for worthy causes through walking & talking

It is well-publicised that athletes from all sports often suffer from mental illness. This can happen during a career but is particularly common after retirement from a professional sport.

Whilst mental health awareness and understanding are improving, we found that going out for a walk really does help to improve levels of stress and anxiety that can be built up over time.

Walking and talking can have many benefits, including weight loss, reduced anxiety and stress relief.

Extreme Sports Bike
Extreme Sports Mountain Climbing

Missions completed


Causes helped



The WATCH walkers…

Our charity was founded by a group of ex-professional footballers and their friends. We got together to try to raise awareness of mental health issues arising after retirement from sport, but things blossomed into us supporting the wider mental health community and other local charities.

Mark Crossley
Nigel Jemson
Chris Kirkland
Jon Parkin
Dean Windass
Steve Howey

News & events

Follow the latest fundraising news and events from #walkingsbrilliant here. You can also follow us on Twitter for the latest news.

Recognition for WATCH


Mark Crossley receiving acknowledgement from the prime minister by private letter and recognised by the government’s points of light scheme, which awards for charitable and voluntary work , it was received on behalf of everyone at WATCH #walkingsbrilliant

Samantha Sykes Foundation – £500


Help young people and children who are victims or at high risk of sexual exploitation and help children and young adults who are looked after by local authority.

Halton Haven Hospice – £500


GoFundMe support of 34 mile Sandstone Trail walk, raising money for the hospice. Chris Kirkland took part and completed the walk as part of the fundraising team.

Forget me Not Hospice – £5000


Children’s Hospice which supports children with life shortening conditions, plus their families. Donation will fund the set up and furnishing of a serenity garden.

Speedo Mick – £500


JustGiving support of Lands’ End to John O Groats challenge, raising money for Mental Health and Suicide prevention charities. Joined on the walking challenge whilst climbing up to the summit of Scafell Pike by our very own Chris Kirkland.

Donation to Lucy Neale – £1000 (4 x £250)


Support for a family whose young son Freddie was suddenly hospitalised in a critical condition and diagnosed with a rare form of epilepsy. Freddie has spent numerous weeks in hospital and the epilepsy has now stabilised from aggressive and uncontrollable. The donation helped the family mentally through a very tough and uncertain time in their lives.

Ahead of the Game foundation – £5000


Dave Bolton & Dominic Matteo charity which supports individuals and families that are going through a personal battle with brain cancer. The charity provides free rehabilitation and supports financially along side implementing fully funded physical and mental health wellbeing programmes.

Kath’s lads charity team – £60


Kath’s lads’ charity team was set up in memory of Kath Valenti who worked at a local 5 a side centre and collapsed from a heart attack and sadly died despite the best efforts of all around. The events have impacted on several individuals’ mental health after witnessing the events. WATCH responded to a request with 2 dozen footballs for the centres football charity fundraising tournament.

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