A POPULAR fundraising event for hospital wards across BCP is back after a successful previous year.

Hundreds of hospital staff and friends are expected to take part as they walk either 3km, 5km, or 10km through Upton Country Park.

After exploring Upton Country Park’s picturesque scenery, participants will be treated to a couple of slices of complimentary pizza.

Last year, £9,188 was raised for the trust through the event.

Amy Beauchamp, University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity public fundraising officer, said: “Walk for Wards is more than just a walk – it's a great opportunity for participants to invite their friends, family, work colleagues, community groups, and four-legged companions to have fun and raise much-needed funds for our hospitals.

“This event is a chance to reflect and say thanks for everything that NHS staff and volunteers have done and continue to do to support the thousands of people who depend on our care every year.

“In 2023, we saw over 330 people taking part in Walk for Wards and over £24,000 raised for wards and departments across the trust.

"This support has meant the world to our NHS heroes, who work hard every day to care for patients and their families at our hospitals.

“We’re hopeful that even more people will show their support at this year and bring their loved ones along for a picnic as they celebrate with us on Saturday 28 September, the wards and departments that make our hospitals truly unique.”

Hot Radio will once again be back to help sponsor the event and entertain participants.

Alan Smith, Hot Radio's commercial director, said: “Our local NHS hospitals are always there to support patients in need and their families, helping Dorset flourish and thrive.

“Last year, we raised a phenomenal £6,155.10 as our Hot Walkers came together to support University Hospitals Dorset NHS Charity.

“We hope to raise £10,000 to support The BEACH Appeal and uplift the services so many people in our community depend on. Let's go above and beyond for our local hospitals and NHS staff that go the extra mile for us.”

The event will be held on September 28 and tickets can be bought via the UHD website.