Father Phil and his supporters at The Deep
Father Phil arriving at The Deep.

Hull Vicar Father Phil walks from Liverpool to Hull to raise money for Leisure and Family Support Service’s sensory garden

Father Phil, the Vicar of Sculcoates, St Mary’s and St Paul’s churches in Hull and Bishop’s Adviser to the Deliverance Ministry, has walked 130 miles over 5 days from the Liver Building in Liverpool to The Deep in Hull.

He did it to raise money for new sensory equipment for the children and young people supported by the council’s Leisure and Family Support Service (LAFSS).

LAFSS, provide activities and group sessions including short breaks for children and young people with a disability, complex needs or additional need, up to the age of 18.

Father Phil walked around 26 miles a day.

He set out on Monday 1 April from Liverpool and arrived on Friday 5 April at The Deep in Hull.

His walk has raised around £7,000 towards the new indoor sensory garden, including donations from his individual supporters and local businesses.

The LAFSS team will be relocating to a new building this year. The team want to bring the outdoors in for children and young people by providing them with an indoor garden that has sensory equipment, including a swing that can be used for both wheelchair and non-wheelchair users. It will also provide a calm space for children and young people to play, feel safe, and relax.

The team are hoping to have the indoor garden completed in 2024/25.

Father Phil was supported by his wife Karen, staff from the children and families disability team, including social workers, occupational therapy staff and leisure and family support workers along with some children, parents and other agencies that work with the service. At the finish, he was also greeted by the Director of Children’s Services, Pauline Turner and Head of Service for Children and Families Disability Team, Niki Heffernan from the council.

The Sailmaker’s Arms in the old town supported Father Phil and supporters were there able to celebrate with him following his arrival at The Deep.

Pauline Turner, the Director of Children’s Services at Hull City Council, said: “Father Phil’s determination and generosity will go a long way to helping us provide a much-needed sensory garden which our children and young people can enjoy for many years to come.”

Visit the LAFSS Facebook page for more updates about their work and how the build progresses.

The interior of a children's home in Hull. There's a yellow sofa, some wooden drawers, a green sofa with cushions, a bookshelf, a window and a patterned foot stool.
City centre buildings with a blue sky and light coloured paving, with trees and outdoor seating