VETERAN Wayne Cherry kept his fundraising goal alive by braving the blazing heat during the first weekend of his VJ Day marathon walk.

Mr Cherry, from Rowde, who is a member of Seend Royal British Legion, is aiming to walk 75 miles to mark the 75th anniversary of VJ Day on Saturday.

He wants to make sure the memory of those who fought in Asia is kept alive and is also raising funds for the military charity SSAFA during his long walk around Devizes.

He said: “Treatment of allied prisoners of war by the hands of the Japanese army in Asia during WW2 was without question barbaric.

“Those who survived struggled to come to terms with their experience and many would never talk about it.

“On August 15, 2020 it is the 75th anniversary of the end of the war in Asia and one that I shall be marking with respect.

“I could not contribute much to mark VE day earlier this year due to health issues and therefore aim to make up for this by completing a 75 mile walk.

“The Covid Pandemic has presented many charities with huge challenges, one of which is their ability to raise funds to ensure their vital work can continue.”

He will walk around 10 miles each day until Friday starting each day from outside Wadworths at 10am and head towards the Market Place.

The route will also take in Long Street, Sidmouth Street, The Brittox back to the Market Place, Snuff Street and New Park Street.

He said: “It is approximately two miles per circuit. So five circuits a day. It would be very much appreciated if anyone would like to accompany me for as little or as long as you wish, I will be carrying a collection bucket each day for anyone who may wish to make a donation or alternatively via bank transfer to sort code 11 02 31, account No 11076167.”

Other veterans will also be marking VJ Day on Saturday in Devizes despite Royal British Legion cancelling public events..Lt Col Bobby Haslam, who is chairman of the branch, said: “The Royal British Legion has cancelled all public celebrations and Remembrance activities for VJ Day.

“But I have been talking to some of my RBL members and they are going to turn up at Devizes War Memorial to pay their individual respects to family members and friends they knew who served in Burma.

“My late father was a member of the Burma Star Association, having served with the BEF, through Dunkirk and then Burma, with his pals from home, so I will be laying a wreath.”

But he stressed this was not a public event and the veterans laying wreaths would be doing so on their own behalf and not as members of the Royal British Legion.