HIGHLAND CROSS - the unique coast to coast midsummer charity duathlon

 

 

 

Highland Cross

Highland Cross is a  50-mile duathlon (20 miles on foot, 30 miles on bike) traversing the spectacular Scottish Highlands coast to coast, west to east from Kintail through Glen Affric and Strathglass to Beauly.

 

Highland Cross exists to raise money for causes that benefit the people of Highland, disadvantaged by disability, ill health or social need.

 

Entry to the Highland Cross is by invitation only for 265 teams of 3 (795 persons) of all athletic abilities; walkers, joggers, runners and cyclists. Teams must pledge to raise a minimum of £500 in sponsorship for the charities nominated by Highland Cross.

 

Charities interested in becoming beneficiaries from Highland Cross should consult the "Charities" page and fully examine the funding conditions before applying.

 

Highland Cross Latest News

Highland Cross 2024 - 22 June 2024

Monday 4th March 2024

All team entry owners can now carry out substitutions within their teams, up until Monday 17th June.  See FAQs section for more information on this process.

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15th February 2024

Payment reminder – deadline is Thursday 22nd February

Team entry owners are reminded that if they want to take up the offer of a team for this year’s Highland Cross, then they need to complete the process by paying the entry fee before the deadline of 23.59hrs this Thursday 22nd February – see your acceptance email from SiEntries on 2nd February.

 

You should log in to SiEntries and go to My Entries to find your Highland Cross 2024 event and click on Edit to convert your entry to a Full one by accepting all the terms and conditions, and this will take you to the payment process.

 

If payment is not received by midnight on 22nd February, your team place may be offered to one of the teams on the waiting list.

 

Pay without delay!

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30th January 2024

To all who requested a link to apply for a team for Highland Cross 2024, the deadline is 23.59hrs tomorrow, 31st January.   There will be a ballot to determine team places and all teams will be notified in early February if they have been successful or otherwise in the ballot.   Successful teams will be then be asked to make payment of the team entry of £180 by 22nd February to secure their place. 

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28th December 2023

Highland Cross - 22nd June 2024 – 40th Anniversary – electronic entry application process

 

We will again be using SiEntries www.sientries.co.uk for online team applications for the 2024 event.  Highland Cross will not be listed as one of their events as it is invitation only event.  SiEntries will be contacting all registered team contacts on 4 January 2024 with a single use link to allow them to apply for a team.  As in the past, balloting will be necessary in order to determine who will be invited to take part.   For further information on the entry process, please see the notes in the FAQs section.

 

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24th November 2023

HIGHLAND CROSS 2023

 

Highland Cross reaches over £5.9million!

 

The figure raised in 2023 from Highland Cross participants is £329,378!

 

The participants in Highland Cross 2023 have done an outstanding fundraising job and raised a magnificent sum for Highland Charities!

 

 

Five fantastic causes are main beneficiaries this year:

Àban – are purchasing a new vehicle

Caberfeidh Horizons – are purchasing a new vehicle

Friends of Cameron House – are purchasing a new vehicle

Highland Hospice – are purchasing a new van for their retail department

Partnerships for Wellbeing - who have purchased a new wheelchair adapted car

In addition to the primary causes, the participants’ success will also allow some smaller grants to be distributed to charities across Highland over the next month.

The Organisers would once again like to thank competitors, sponsors and volunteers for their continued support of Highland Cross.

Two teams organised by Highland Cross stalwart and Highland businessman Willie Gray comprising of folk from the Edinburgh based investment management firm Baillie Gifford raised an astonishing sum of £33,853 as the top fundraisers this year. Their amazing achievement will be recognised with a special award in the New Year and the Fundraising award for a standard three person team goes to a team called Mid Life Crossers with a total of £4,885.43.  

Top Fundraising Teams 2023

Raised (£)

Team Name

Competitors

4,885.43

Mid Life Crossers

Hamish Matheson, Tommy Dallmeyer, Guy Phillips

4,187.11

Douglas Russell

Rosie Russell, Charlotte Mountain, Iain Russell

4,080.00

The Cross Boys

Mark Smith, Kevin McDonald, Bryan Cameron

3,415.00

Over the Hill

Steven Scott, Colin Maclean, Calum Matheson

3,311.97

Team Highland

Kris Frampton, Kay Skinner, Charlie Morrison

3,211.70

Squeek and creek

Deryck Brown, James Tree, Mick Rimmer

3,145.00

Farrar Frasers

George Fraser, Andrea Fraser, Jamie Robson

2,909.32

Dougs Disciples

David Steele, Steven Setford, John Scott

2,725.11

ASAcross

Louise Macleod, Sheila Smith, Neil Allardice

2,601.00

Stunt Nuts

Jonny Macleod, Scott Macdonald, Stephen Morrison

 

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1st September 2023 – 5pm

Sorry - the list to receive a team application for Highland Cross 2024 is now closed

From the replies received from 2023 competitors, unsuccessful applications from previous years and new applications, we are again oversubscribed.  We have this morning received a large number of emails requesting that their names be added to the list to receive a link to apply for a team at the beginning of January 2024.  If everyone returns their completed applications, we will again be involved in balloting.

All requests received up to 5pm today will be added to the list and are being acknowledged.

The Organisers apologise to anyone who wished to add their name to the list but can only suggest that if they are interested in Highland Cross 2025, they mark 2nd September 2024 in their diary as the date to register for a team application for 2025.

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25 August 2023

Reminder that new entries open for Highland Cross 2024 on Friday 1st September 2023. Competitors who took part in 2023 have already had the chance to priority register by returning their postcards

On past experience, we are flooded with applications and potential competitors are advised to send an email early in the morning to us on info@highlandcross.co.uk to request to be put on the list to receive an application link as the list may close without notice, some years even before noon.  All email requests will be acknowledged in due course.

Team applications will be sent out via an email link from SiEntries online entry system to all registered team contacts in the first week of January 2024.

Please see our FAQs section for more information.

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Highland Cross 2023

Highland Cross 2023 took place on Saturday 17 June 2023.  727 competitors started the event, with 716 completing the course and 11 retirements.  A full list of individual results can be found here.

 

Photography

Robin McConnell's images of Highland Cross are available from the website: www.21cphotos.com

 

Where do I send sponsor money?

Sponsor money should be banked (details below) or send cheque(s) to Highland Cross, Redwood, 19 Culduthel Road, Inverness, IV2 4AA, with competitor number on reverse of cheque (along with sponsor sheets if applicable, to enable gift aid to be claimed).

 

If you wish to pay by online banking, the sponsorship account details are:

  • Account name:  Highland Cross

  • Account no:  00439605

  • Sort code:  80-91-26

Please quote your surname and competitor number in the payment reference e.g.  SMITH  123
 

Where do I send my completed sponsor sheets?

Please send to Highland Cross Organisers, Redwood, 19 Culduthel Road, Inverness, IV2 4AA.  Please write your name and competitor number on the top of each sheet.

 

Justgiving

All sponsor money donated through Justgiving is paid directly into the Highland Cross bank account and we have access to a complete breakdown of the amounts received by this method in order to ensure that all amounts are credited to team totals.  Competitors who raise their money through Justgiving do not need to send anything further to the organisers - the team contact will be notified in early September of the total amount raised by his/her team and asked to get in touch with the organisers should he/she disagree with this total.

 

Lost Property
These items are being held at Redwood, 19 Culduthel Road, Inverness, IV2 4AA (office of MacKenzie Kerr, Chartered Accountants - 9-5pm Monday to Friday).   Please phone 07729 892 702 if you would like to arrange for anything to be sent out.

 

Hardback - My Story, Sarah The Duchess of York

Pale blue Hydrapeak bottle

Blue "Your water your life" bottle

Black Crivit walking pole

Navy shorts

Lime green Nike running top

Dermol 500 lotion

Garmin timer

Visatec snood

Bicycle mirror

Black Xlite cap

Keys on pink keyring

Decathlon Btwin strap

Black Truflo bike pump

Siemens Healthineers pen

Leffingwell Prizm P reflective glasses

 

Event Merchandise - The Sign Centre, Inverness have once again produced commemorative merchandise for the event.  The graphic for this year features the route profile against the date.  This link will take you to their website page displaying the full range and order process.

 

https://signcentreinverness.co.uk/highland-cross/

 

 

The following are statements from the charities that are to benefit from Highland Cross 2023

 

ÀBAN

 

Àban offers positive outdoor adventures for children and families in need. We are a stable presence where many traditional community institutions have been eroded. Our doors are open to all without the need for prior experience or booking online.

We aim to:

  • Improve confidence as youngsters get ready for the world of work

  • Integrate healthy outdoor activities as part of daily life

  • Help the next generation to enjoy and protect our natural world

Our work is focussed in Merkinch and South Kessock. Our approach is local, simple and cost-effective. In less than 2 years we have established:

  • Scotland’s only independent open Duke of Edinburgh’s Award group, incl. 10 full scholarships

  • An outdoor group for Young Adult Carers run in partnership with Connecting Carers

  • An “Adventure Nurture” programme run with the Guidance Department at Inverness High School, supporting 12 of their most vulnerable S1 pupils

  • A free kit library for those who want to get outdoors but lack the necessary equipment.

We are a charity which stands on our own two feet as well as seeking grant funding. We generate revenue through our holiday camps, climbing programmes and the Kessock Ferry Swim. This event has its own Community Partner Programme, spreading the benefit of the event throughout our community.

We now plan to expand our youth programmes. Whilst we start with adventures close to home, our participants soon want to spread their wings. With funding from the Highland Cross we can use a vehicle to access adventures further from home.

 


 

Cameron House

 

Cameron House is a residential Care Home for up to 30 people who are living with Dementia. The application for Highland Cross funding is to replace the existing minibus – originally gifted by Highland Cross in 2008.
Primarily, the minibus is a means of enabling our residents to leave the unit for outings. This will involve many of the following:

  • Going out for runs/picnics where we can look for new lambs or dolphins

  • Going out shopping and for coffee

  • Ensuring that residents are able to stay in touch with former community contact they had prior to admission

  • Enabling residents to attend faith events such as services, Mass, Social events in the Church communities etc.

  • Facilitating trips home where that is appropriate

  • Enabling residents to attend events that they would have enjoyed prior to admission and that were important to them in the past

  • Allowing us to attend events that are run in the local schools/nurseries where we have contact.

  • Enabling us to attend a Dementia Singing Group run in a local hotel.

  • Enabling us to take part in the Seagull Trust boat trips.

  • Providing the opportunity for our Men to spend time away from the unit which is predominantly female.

  • Supporting family members to to be part of the resident’s life by attending events with them.

In addition to the more recreational purposes listed above, the minibus has also been invaluable in enabling residents to attend appointments as wheelchair access taxis are not always available especially for morning or afternoon appointments.
 


 

Highland Hospice

 

As the only hospice serving adults across the Highlands, our palliative and end of life care services have been a vital source of comfort and support for our patients, their families and our communities since 1987.

Our care increases quality of life by reducing pain and suffering, enabling our patients and their families to make the most of the precious time they have left together. Our rehabilitation and wellbeing team offers tailored support to meet the unique needs of those with progressive, life-shortening conditions.

Working with our communities, we provide home care in a number of locations, allowing people to live at home for longer; our befriending team tackles the loneliness and isolation which often accompanies deteriorating health; and our social work and bereavement services help children and adults to cope both during their loved one’s illness and following their death.

Our services are offered freely to everyone who needs them but they are also costly to deliver. We’re hugely grateful to receive an annual grant from the NHS, but we must still raise more than 75% of our income, mostly through fundraising and retail, to continue delivering our care.

The grant from the Highland Cross would have a considerable impact on our retail provision. By replacing our current van, we can continue to transport donated goods between our shops to ensure that each shop has a high level of quality stock. This maximises profitability and increases net income to support the delivery of vital Hospice services.

 


 

Caberfeidh Horizons

 

Caberfeidh Horizons was set up to address the needs of adults challenged by learning difficulties. Seventeen years later, we now support a wider population, meeting the needs of social isolation in a rural area where adult services are scarce.


We employ 2 trainers, 3 staff members, have 11 trainees and 50+ volunteers who help run our Community Hub and our retail shops selling second-hand goods. These shops provide our income. The resale of goods helps people in our community who are facing hardship and promotes recycling. We also have a foodshare/foodwaste operation.


As an additional vehicle, a van with five passenger seats and cargo space would bring many benefits including increasing the number of people we can transport and the activities we offer. All our trainees could be transported to the same activity or, more importantly, they could choose their activity - something which they may never have had. The van space would allow us to pick up/ deliver larger pieces of furniture which can be upcycled in our trainee-led workshop and help with collecting donations and house clearances.


We work in the community offering a warm space to meet, hot lunches and Cosy Boxes (warm clothing, hot water bottles etc) for those facing increasing financial difficulty. The van would allow us to deliver food and goods and enable the housebound to access our services.


We will continue to help as many people as possible with the resources available. This vehicle would enable us to do even more.

 



Partnerships for Wellbeing

We are delighted to be one of the nominated charities for this year’s Highland Cross event. The Cross has been an important part of the evolution of our community transport Service since we were established in 2004. Twice before the efforts of participants and the generosity of those who donate have allowed us to purchase cars that enable our volunteers to take elderly and vulnerable adults to health care and day care appointments across the city. We’re much more than a taxi service, because our volunteer drivers take the time to ensure that their passengers get safely from their homes to their destinations and back again. Many of our clients lack the confidence to or mobility to use regular public transport and our service allows them a degree of independence and the ability to the help they need to remain living in their own homes and communities many years before they might otherwise have to move into long term residential or nursing care.


This year, we hope to replace our ageing cars so that our entire three vehicles can accommodate wheelchair users. We know there is a dearth of such transport and have been told there are just nine wheelchair accessible taxis in the city. As a result, many elderly people feel as if they have remained in lockdown long after the rest of us were able to begin enjoying the post Covid freedoms we used to take for granted.


The support of Highland Cross will, hopefully, enable us to replace one of our ageing cars with a brand new vehicle which will be in service for many years to come.”

 

Highland Cross have signed up with JustGiving to enable competitors to set up their own sponsorship page.  A link will be available here shortly to set up a page for 2024.