Man on walking tour of UK's coastline 'met with so much love' in Suffolk

Chris Lewis and his girlfriend are walking the whole of the UK coastline with their dog, they have n

Chris Lewis is on a walking tour of the UK coastline and has reached Suffolk - Credit: CHARLOTTE BOND

An ex-serviceman on an 18,000-mile walking tour of the UK said he was "met with so much love" as he arrived in Suffolk.

Chris Lewis, a former paratrooper with the 2nd Battalion Parachute Regiment, set out from his hometown of Swansea in August 2017 to embark on a trip around the British Isles.

His mammoth challenge — which has included laps around each of the hundreds of offshore Scottish islands — has seen Mr Lewis rack up about 15,000 miles so far.

Chris Lewis and his girlfriend are walking the whole of the UK coastline with their dog, they have n

Chris Lewis and his girlfriend are walking the whole of the UK coastline with their dog, they have now reached Sizewell - Credit: CHARLOTTE BOND

The challenge has raised almost £250,000 in aid of SSAFA which provides support for veterans of the British Armed Forces.

The 41-year-old, who is being accompanied on the walk by his dog Jet and girlfriend Kate, crossed the border from Norfolk into Suffolk earlier this week.

He has spent his first few days speaking to schoolchildren and neighbours in Lowestoft, Southwold and Aldeburgh, where he received a "warm welcome".

Mr Lewis, who camps outside every night, has arranged to meet up with Felixstowe mayor Mark Jepson further down the coastline and is expecting to be in Suffolk for another week and a half.

Chris Lewis and his girlfriend are walking the whole of the UK coastline with their dog, they have n

Mr Lewis' girlfriend Kate and dog Jet are accompanying him on his journey - Credit: CHARLOTTE BOND

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But he said he has enjoyed his time in the county so far and paid tribute to the residents who welcomed the walkers "with open arms".

Mr Lewis said:  "We have had a wonderful reception. What makes it even more beautiful is that Kate is from here.

"I spent so long in the wilds — it took me ages to do Scotland — so I was so excited to get down to the east coast.

Chris Lewis and his girlfriend are walking the whole of the UK coastline with their dog, they have n

Chris Lewis and his girlfriend are walking the whole of the UK coastline with their dog, they have now reached Sizewell - Credit: CHARLOTTE BOND

"We've really been met with so much love here in Suffolk. It's so nice to see the places clear of litter.

"The people here are so proud of where they live. They have welcomed us with open arms and made us feel like a part of the community."

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