Chesterfield News

Caring Ashgate Hospicecare colleagues swap scrubs for hiking boots to take on High Peak Trail challenge

Two Ashgate Hospicecare staff members who provide vital palliative care in the North Derbyshire community are getting their walking boots on for a charity hiking challenge – and they’re urging the public to join them.

Community Palliative Care Support Workers Dianah Whelpton and Fiona Hardy are taking on the charity’s brand-new High Peak Trail event this summer to help the charity fund care for the families they support.

The event, which takes place on Saturday, July 10th, will see the pair – along with Dianah’s husband Paul – hike 17 miles across the scenic Derbyshire countryside.

The trail, which also offers the option of a shorter eight-mile route, will see the group head along the route of the former Cromford and High Peak Railway.

Dianah, who has been working for Ashgate for the past two years, wanted to do something to raise funds towards the care after the charity had been forced to close its shops and cancel fundraising events during the pandemic.

“I decided to take part in the High Peak Trail walk for Ashgate to try and raise some much-needed funds after our hospice was severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said.

“Our wonderful communities haven’t stopped raising money for us in all kinds of innovative ways and continue to make such a huge effort to support our services. So when I learned of this event, I thought that it would be a very good opportunity to join in with the efforts while exploring the wonderful Derbyshire countryside!

“It’s also a great opportunity to highlight the huge amount of work that the Community Nursing Teams do in caring for thousands of people in their own homes every year.

“I am inspired daily by the wonderful people that I am privileged to care for and I am raising funds to make sure that we can continue caring for years to come.”

The off-road linear walk is traffic-free and promises to be a fun day out with friends and family. There will be free parking at Cromford Meadows, and free transport will be provided to take participants to the start point of the walk so they can walk back to their vehicles at the finish line.

Fiona is urging people across North Derbyshire to join her, Dianah and Paul on the trail this July.

The 53-year-old, who started working at the hospice in 2002, added: “I’ve always enjoyed being outdoors and walking is something I do on a regular basis, but I have to admit that 17 miles will be double the distance I usually go!

“It’s been a long time since I started at Ashgate and there’s been lots of changes to the hospice in its appearance and the number of staff working here.

“But the hospice values and compassionate care delivered by our community teams and Inpatient Unit staff has always been excellent.

“I’m looking forward to taking on the High Peak Trail in tribute to my amazing colleagues and the wonderful patients and families we care for. Come and join us – not only will you get to enjoy the stunning Derbyshire countryside, but you’ll be helping us fund care for the families who need our support most.”

There are a limited number of places for the event so people are being urged to sign up quickly. Entry costs £10 per person, which includes a t-shirt (if requested), medal, refreshments and more.

To sign up go to or call Ashgate Hospicecare’s fundraising team on 01246 567 250.

To sponsor Dianah and Fiona’s team go to

Ashgate Hospicecare supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

Josh Marsh

Destination Chesterfield Coordinator (Investment and Marketing)

Email Josh

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