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Mother to start coastal walk around Britain to honour memory of late daughter, 5


The epic walk will start at Durdle Door

The epic walk will start at Durdle Door

The epic walk will start at Durdle Door

A grieving mother is to embark on a year-long coastal walk in memory of her daughter who suddenly died last year.

Natalia Spencer is starting her "Walk of Love" on Valentine's Day to pay tribute to her five-year-old daughter, Elizabeth, who died just before Christmas after a rare auto-immune disease sparked by a common virus caused her organs to shut down.

The 41-year-old will set off from the beach at Durdle Door in Dorset at around midday on Sunday to tackle six thousand miles of Britain's coastline in a clockwise loop around mainland Britain.

The spot is special to Ms Spencer, who is originally from Ukraine, as it is there that she last visited the seaside with her late daughter.

She said of the challenge: "I am not nervous - I feel good about it. This is a very easy thing to do after what I have been through.

"Am I brave? I don't know. I don't feel brave, I am just dealing with the situation because there is not much I could do.

"She was my whole entire life - all my routine was around her. There was nothing left for me.

"She will be with me every step of the way. We will do it together."

The girl was put on life support but died after a 17-day fight for her life in the intensive care unit at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children in December.

Ms Spencer is hoping to raise £100,000 for the Wallace And Gromit Grand Appeal, the Bristol Children's Hospital Charity.

She added she is also planning something to mark her daughter's birthday in May, but this will depend on where she has reached on her journey.

Asked if she had a message for other bereaved parents, Ms Spencer said she would love for them to join her for part of the walk, which she hopes to complete in time for the anniversary of Elizabeth's death.

To sponsor the walk visit: www.elizabethsfootprint.com.