THE governor of a Worcestershire charity will be taking strides to help a cause close to his heart.

Peter Flagg, who has been on the board of St Richard’s Hospice for the past eight years, is swapping the Malvern Hills for the Great Wall of China when he sets off on a mammoth charity trek tomorrow.

The 65-year-old has been involved with the charity since 1999, more actively since taking early retirement in 2003. Mr Flagg, of Malvern, will be joining a group walking part of the Great Wall, having previously taken on a challenge trek in the Atlas Mountains in Morocco for St Richard’s, as well as completing the Three Peaks, Welsh 3000s challenge of climbing 15 peaks over 3,000ft and the 31-mile Worcestershire Way Walk in a day.

He hopes his regular walking with his wife Valerie and energetic games of tennis will ensure his fitness levels for the challenge. “I support St Richard’s because of the care and compassion that it provides when people most need it, even more so now that the hospice is addressing the needs of end-of-life care and not just life-threatening illnesses,” he said.

“I have had to deal with cancer myself for the last 20 years so I can empathise with St Richard’s patients. My personal maxim is to conduct yourself as if you’ll be here forever but to enjoy every day as if it’s your last.”

Mr Flagg said he was also looking forward to seeing the natural environment of a different continent and the lifestyles of local people. He said: “It is always humbling to see how different cultures have to survive without the basics of electricity, water and sewerage, let alone the luxuries that we take so much for granted. I am looking forward to seeing the Terracotta Army near Xian.

“I am not looking forward to the very basic toilet arrangements and particularly those where reportedly you have to share.”