Kirkintilloch man is following in the footsteps of a literary legend

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An adventurous financial advisor is bidding to help troubled teenagers by following an epic route created by one of Scotland’s finest authors.

Alan Caldwell (44), from Kirkintilloch, is planning to tackle the 238 mile Stevenson Way, which runs from Mull to Edinburgh, at the end of June.

It mirrors the journey taken by 17-year-old orphan David Balfour in Robert Louis Stevenson’s classic novel Kidnapped.

The voyage will raise cash for charity Stevenson Adventures which was dreamed up, along with the trail itself, by Lenzie resident Ian Logan.

Alan, who is a trustee of the charity, said: “We’re looking to take around 30 disadvantaged teenagers out to the Stevenson Way each year to give them the chance to experience the outdoors away from computers and mobile phone signals. It takes them to some really wild spots.

“I’m hoping to raise £2,000 for the charity, which will be spent on things like equipment and transport, and to raise awareness of the Stevenson Way itself.”

On his way he’ll face a number of challenges, including the fact that there are no markers or paths to point him in the right direction.

He explained: “I’ll be by myself for much of the time but will have a support team and will be doing parts of the route on bike. I’m hoping to complete it in six days.

“You really have to be properly prepared and self-sufficient for the journey but I’ve done quite a lot of outdoors stuff in the past.

“There’s a few tough sections, including Glencoe and Rannoch Moor, but I’m more worried about the midges to be honest - which is the reason I’ll be stating in bothies and hostels rather than camping!”

If you would like to sponsor Alan go to www.charitygiving.co.uk/alancaldwell

For more information about the Stevenson Way, including how to tackle it yourself, go to www.stevensonway.org.uk

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