In memory of little Archie

Archie, aged around 10 months, with his newborn cousin Oliver, mum Jenni and dad Alby,
Archie, aged around 10 months, with his newborn cousin Oliver, mum Jenni and dad Alby,

A COUPLE will walk more than 100 miles with friends, visiting football clubs in London to raise money for charity in memory of their son.

Alby Bleakley, 27, and Jenni Pyle, 23, from Adeyfield, Hemel Hempstead, tragically lost their 18-month-old son Archie to mitochondrial disease in December.

Archie, aged around 13 months, with dad Alby

Archie, aged around 13 months, with dad Alby

Now the couple, from Springfield Road, will walk the distance over four days, visiting 14 football clubs in and around London including Crystal Palace, Chelsea, Arsenal, Barnet, and Alby’s team QPR.

Starting at Watford, in the town where Archie was born, on April 25 the group will collect memorabilia donated by each club, which will then be auctioned off to raise money for the Children’s Mitochondrial Disease Network in July.

Everyone taking part will also be sponsored for their efforts in walking the 100 mile distance.

Archie was born on June 30, 2010, but on July 30 last year he had a sudden fit and was rushed to hospital.

After numerous tests, he was diagnosed with mitochondrial disorder in October.

The genetic condition, which causes a rapid decline and seizures, has no known cure.

Dementia, breathing failures and altering states of consciousness are also caused by the disease.

Jenni and Alby brought their son home for his final days, and he passed away on December 9.

Jenni said: “We’re getting loads of memorabilia from the clubs, which we will then auction off for the charity.

“Last time we held a fundraising event we raised around £10,000 and we’re hoping to do just as well this time around.

“Walking 100 miles is going to be hard, but we’re definitely looking forward to it – it’s worth it.

“Not only do we want to raise money for the charity but we also want to raise awareness.”

Visit www.justgiving.com/archiesmission to pledge funds to the charitable cause.

For more information on the couple’s chosen charity visit www.emdn-mitonet.co.uk

The couple have also been supported in their fundraising efforts by Alby’s cousin Jo Peachey who held a fundraising day last month, raising £500 for the charity.

Starting at Watford FC the walk will then visit Barnet, Tottenham, Arsenal, Leyton Orient, Dagenham & Redbridge, West Ham, Charlton, Millwall, Crystal Palace, AFC Wimbledon, Chelsea and Fulham football clubs.

It will end on Saturday April 28 at QPR’s Loftus Road ground.