AROUND 50 walkers, with and without dogs, will be taking to the fields and lanes around Old Alresford to raise funds for family support charity Home-Start Winchester next month.

Nina the Labrador will be returning along with her owners Mel and Paul Bliss of Gay Dog Boarding Kennels, near Alresford, who are sponsoring the annual event.

Paul said: “It is our third year sponsoring the dog walk and it’s always a great opportunity to dust off the cobwebs and enjoy a walk in the spring sunshine. Dogs are not compulsory,” he added, “you can even just come for lunch. We are very happy to be supporting Home-Start and the work that the charity does with families who are struggling to cope.”

Added support to the day has come from Tesco Express in Andover Road, Winchester, who are providing a selection of cheeses to go with the ploughman’s lunch and which will accompany four home-made soups made by Home-Start volunteers.

The dog walk takes place on Thursday March 14 and starts at Pinglestone House, Old Alresford. Arrival is 10.30am and departure at 10.45am whatever the weather. There will be two walks of different lengths and there will be a few stiles. A hearty lunch will be ready to welcome the walkers on their return in the 17th century Pinglestone barn, courtesy of Lord and Lady Wakeham.

Tickets at £10 can be booked online with a 70p booking fee at or email, or by calling 01962 851177.

Home-Start Winchester supports young families who are struggling with issues like multiple births, disability of a parent or child, mental

health problems, homelessness, lone parenting, isolation or unemployment.

Families are referred by GPs, health visitors and social workers and these families are supported either in the home by weekly visits of trained volunteers or in one of two family groups. The only condition is that there must be one child under the age of five in the family.

Photo caption: Paul and Mel Bliss of Gay Dog Boarding Kennels with faithful hound Nina.