A GROUP of Oswestry golfers took on a marathon day of golf last week to raise money for a national charity close to their hearts.

The four golfers made the most of the longest day of the year on Friday by playing 72 holes of golf.

Darryl Hopton, Crag Dearing, Mick Dearing and Stuart Foulkes began the challenge at 4am setting off at Oswestry Golf Club, before completing rounds at Llanymynech Golf Club, Mile End Golf Club and then returning for a final round at Oswestry.

The group raised an estimated £3,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support through the challenge.

It was not the first time Oswestry Golf Club captain Mick had taken part in the 72-hole challenge, after completing it in 2013.

He said: “When we did the challenge in 2013, it was within a fairly short time after my sister Carol had died of cancer.

“It was terrible seeing how Carol’s effervescent character and beauty was changed while suffering from the disease.

“It was my son Craig who alerted me to the Longest Day Challenge back then, and he was the driving force of getting our team together then.

“Since then, he has badgered me most years since to say we should do it again, but I’ve said I’m too old!

“This year we have made the challenge even more difficult by doing the challenge over three different courses, adding more travelling between each round of golf throughout the day.”

After starting at Oswestry Golf Club, the group returned to the club for the final round of the day at 5pm.

The group completed 17 hours of golf, walking more than 24 miles.

Mick said despite the difficulty of the challenge, it was certainly the right time to do it again after Stuart had also recently lost his sister, Judith, to cancer.

“In getting the team together, which is difficult in itself, as strangely not everyone wants to play golf for about 17 hours and cover around 24 miles doing it – I was aware that Stuart had very sadly lost his sister Judith to cancer recently,” he said.

“There was immediately a common bond there in doing the challenge.”

Mick’s son, Craig, wanted to do even more than the already very difficult challenge, so he added even more difficulty to his weekend of fundraising.

Mick said: “Now Craig being Craig thought the golf wasn’t enough.

“As he lives in south Yorkshire, and we are doing the golf on the Shropshire and Welsh borders, he thought he would ramp up the difficulty even more by cycling from his home.

“He cycled 130 miles to my house in Oswestry the day before the challenge.

“And the following morning he cycled a further 130 miles back to his home in Yorkshire.”

“He’s crazy, but he said if it helps raise money for charity, he’s more than happy to do it.”