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Following famous footsteps to raise funds

13 August 2006

Daniel Lillis will be following in the footsteps of famous explorer, Marco Polo, as he embarks on a journey from London to Beijing to raise money for The Children's Hospital Trust Fund.

Daniel Lillis will be following in the footsteps of famous explorer, Marco Polo, as he embarks on a journey from London to Beijing to raise money for The Children's Hospital Trust Fund.

Under the guidance of Viscount (John Julius) Norwich who is a Patron of The Trust Fund the Great Marco Polo Expedition will help raise money for the charity - which is based at Chelsea and Westminster Hospital.

As part of his journey, Daniel will be visiting a children's hospital in every place that he visits.

Daniel's adventure will start from Chelsea and Westminster Hospital on the Fulham Road where he will set off for Venice and then make the same journey as Marco Polo all the way to Beijing.

Countries to be visited will include Italy, Turkey, Armenia (where he will divert from the original route to Ngorno Karabakh for a meeting with The President and a visit to the Children's Hospital in Stepanakert), Iraq, Mongolia and China.

Daniel, a 47 year old Government Relations Consultant and Magistrate from London, said that the idea for the journey came about from a lunch he had with John Julius Norwich and a book Daniel had read about the famous explorer, Marco Polo, who was one of the first Europeans to travel across Asia through China on this very route.

All of Daniel's travel needs, including flights and accommodation, have been sponsored in kind right down to the specially printed t-shirts and sweatshirts designed for the journey. This means that any money given to the charity in support of Daniel's expedition will go direct to The Children's Hospital Trust Fund for their work.

Daniel said "It's an exciting adventure which has been a year in the planning and one which I hope will help to raise money for this worthwhile cause. As I travel to different countries, I will be visiting children's hospitals to learn of their difficulties and to raise awareness. I will be sending regular email reports to London about my experiences during the expedition. It is a great privilege to visit so many children in need and it is hoped to build a lasting alliance which will be of benefit to all concerned. In that way we can work together to improve care for sick children everywhere. We should also remember their families and all those who care for them."

The Children's Hospital Trust Fund was set up at the old Westminster Hospital in 1981 and so far has raised more than £1m. Its purpose is to make charitable contributions towards the purchase of medical and surgical equipment for the paediatric areas of Chelsea and Westminster Hospital which takes children from many parts of the country and to provide help and comfort for sick children in hospital, in the community at large and at home.

Anyone wishing to sponsor Daniel's journey on behalf of The Children's Hospital Trust Fund (registered charity number 283091) should send donations to Charles Henderson, Administrator, The Children's Hospital Trust Fund, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, 369 Fulham Road, London SW10 9NH.

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