GYM members and supporters of The SMA Trust took part in a punishing work out to launch the third Cotswold Way MAD Challenge.

RapidFX/Personal Best Fitness, based in Campden, held a ‘boot camp’ exercise class in The Old Market Square last Wednesday to help publicise the event on Saturday, June 28 and Sunday, June 29.

This year's event involves walking 50 miles through the night along part of the Cotswold Way.

There is also 20 and 10-mile options on Sunday, June 29 finishing with a reception for family and friends in the Town Hall.

The trust hopes to smash last year's amount of £30,000 by raising £35,000 for research into Spinal Muscular Atrophy, a muscle-wasting condition.

Speaking at the launch, Joanna Mitchell, Executive Director of The SMA Trust, said: “The SMA Trust relies entirely on private contributions to fund vital research, so events like this are really important to raise awareness of Spinal Muscular Atrophy and raise the funds needed to continue our work.

"The first clinical trials are now under way, bringing real hope, but with so much work still to do.

"We’re very grateful to RapidFX/Personal Best Fitness for their support not just today, but from their recent 24 hour Spinathon, where 60 people pedalled their way through the night to raise £3,000 for The SMA Trust.

"The Cotswold Way is another overnight challenge and, if enough people take part, we’re confident we can smash last year’s total.”

Katharine Jackson, who did the full 50 miles with her husband last year, said: “I have seen at first hand the impact SMA has had on my god-daughter and it was Millie who inspired me to walk nearly two marathons through hilly countryside.

"The sense of achievement at the end was overwhelming and, however tough it got, we felt proud to be experiencing something that Millie and many like her are never able to do, the simple act of putting one foot in front of the other”.

The entrance fee is £30. For details visit or call 01608 663415 or email