Former soldier Anthony Lock raises money for charity with 138-mile 'virtual jog' from Newport to London Cenotaph

A former soldier injured in Afghanistan is raising hundreds of pounds for charity after being unable to march at Remembrance Sunday due to the ongoing pandemic.

Anthony Lock was due to join fellow veterans at the Cenotaph in London on 8 November, but due to coronavirus restrictions the march-past has been cancelled this year.

Instead, he is raising money by completing a 'virtual jog' of 138 miles - the distance from his Newport home to the Cenotaph on Whitehall.

Anthony, a former Corporal with the Royal Welsh regiment, is averaging around 10.6 miles each day on a treadmill at his home, pushing through the pain of his lasting injuries.

The 38-year-old had initially set himself a modest target of £138, representing a pound for every mile jogged.

But his fundraising efforts have exceeded his expectations and so far he has raised more than £2,000 for British Armed Forces charity The Not Forgotten.

Anthony been updating his Twitter page with his progress and aims to complete the challenge on Remembrance Sunday, supported by his partner and 15-year-old daughter.

Anthony said: “I was really looking forward to joining The Not Forgotten, fellow comrades and veterans for the march-past at the Cenotaph on Sunday, but sadly due to COVID this significant event has been cancelled this year.

"I know this has been an extremely challenging year for everyone, but a further lockdown has led to things really spiralling for me recently.”

Anthony was seriously injured in Afghanistan in 2009 and has spinal damage, arthritis and an acute pain condition.

He also has post-traumatic stress disorder, and says he set himself the fundraising challenge to take his mind off things and continue his recovery.

Anthony believes he might not be here today if it wasn't for the support of The Not Forgotten, who he says “really put their arms around me and offered me hope" over the past year.

The charity aims to combat isolation and loneliness amongst the Armed Forces community through social activities and challenge holidays.

The Remembrance Sunday march-past at the Cenotaph in London has been cancelled this year due to the pandemic. Credit: PA Images

Brigadier James Stopford CBE, chief executive officer of The Not Forgotten, said: “We were really looking forward to Anthony joining us to march at the Cenotaph and are saddened that the event has been cancelled this year. 

"We are delighted that Anthony is part of The Not Forgotten family and has taken on this challenge to support his fellow veterans. His spirit and determination in the face of adversity is admirable and we wish him the very best of luck with his challenge.”

Despite the changes this year, people are still encouraged to mark Remembrance Sunday safely on 8 November, by watching the service on television or pausing to observe the two-minute silence.