Kindhearted schoolboy conquers Edinburgh’s 7 hills out of love for his granny

Fuelled by love for his grandmother who has Huntington’s disease, the dedicated young man has raised more than £2,500 through a sponsored hike.

Friday, 4th June 2021, 12:30 pm
Updated Friday, 4th June 2021, 1:08 pm

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Eleven-year-old Struan Waddell and his dad Scott took on the Seven Hills of Edinburgh to raise cash for Scottish Huntington’s Association

Within five hours the pair conquered Castle Rock, Corstorphine Hill, Craiglockhart Hill, Braid Hill, Blackford Hill, Arthur’s Seat and Calton Hill.

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Struan Waddell  took on the seven hills of Edinburgh.
Struan Waddell took on the seven hills of Edinburgh.

The adventurous schoolboy took on this challenge for his Granny Lorna, 68, who has Huntington’s, an incurable neurological disease with severe physical, psychological and mental symptoms.

Struan said: “Granny can struggle with talking, eating, movement, balance and thinking, and I know Scottish Huntington’s Association (SHA) does a lot for people who have this illness by making life easier for them and their families.

“I’ve been involved in fundraising before but this time I wanted to do something for Granny. I received lots of donations from family and friends, and there were also some from people I don’t know, which was great.”

The fundraising campaign is already helping to fund the charity’s lifeline services, which include a network of specialists, youth advisors and a financial wellbeing service.

Every step was fuelled by love for his granny who has Huntington’s.

His mum Karen said: “When Mum was diagnosed in 2013 it was a shock for all of us because we have no family history of the illness.

“Since then, she has had terrific support from the Scottish Huntington’s Association and also from the SHA Edinburgh and Lothian Family Branch support group, which is run by Dina di Sousa.

“We’re very proud of Struan, he was determined to complete the challenge for his Granny and raise so much to help other families.”

SHA’s Head of Income Generation, Lee Johnstone, said: “SHA is a small charity that makes a big difference to families, so Struan can be sure that every step he took and every pound he raised is going a long way to reach families with the right support.

Struan completed the hike in an impressive five hours.

“We understand he’s also been raising awareness about Huntington’s at school amongst his classmates, which is so important because this is a disease that, even today, is misunderstood or not known about by many people. Thank you Struan.”

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