SPEEDO Mick trekked through west Wiltshire this morning to the sound of car horns beeping as part of a 1,000-mile walk to raise funds for charity.

Michael Cullen – who is known affectionately as ‘Speedo Mick’ because he walks wearing just a pair of Everton Football Club swimming trunks – was walking from Marlborough to Timsbury.

The 55-year-old is walking a 1,000 miles from John O’Groats to Land’s End in a zig-zag route across the country to raise £250,000 for the Leave The Light On charity he is setting up.

Mr Cullen, who is from Liverpool and now lives in London, said: “It will take me at least seven weeks and I will be walking close to a marathon a day.

“I am doing it in my speedos and I am freezing. This is the challenge,” said the event lighting rigger.

“But I am getting loads of beeps, loads of donations, loads of teas and coffees and loads of hugs.

“I will be making this journey whilst being in my swimming attire, ie speedos goggles and hat, which will make this challenge a very cold one.

“It will bring a lot of smiles to people’s faces I am sure, as well as raising awareness and vital funds to start up our new projects.”

Mr Cullen started wearing speedos to attend Everton FC games five years ago as part of his fundraising campaign after swimming the English Channel at the age of 48.

His marathon 1,000-mile trek began on December 11 and he hopes to get to Land’s End by February 22.

Mr Cullen had to halt his walk briefly for a week as he received treatment for his calf injury but he is now back on the road and keen to complete his challenge.

He says: “England is not a 1,000 miles long so I am zig-zagging all over the place and I may end up doing more than a 1,000 miles.”

He walks wearing his speedos, a fur hat and a fluorescent high-vis jacket to ensure that vehicles can see him, particularly in the dark.

Mr Cullen said: “People are not slowing down or moving out of the way. It is very dangerous.”

While walking he listens to his own compilation of music on Bluetooth and says: “I would rather lose my speedos than my music.”

When he arrives in Timsbury this evening, Mr Cullen will be welcomed by his wife Rachel, who runs a homeless charity and is “fully supportive” of his charity walk.

Leave The Light On will run community projects for people, young and old, who feel isolated – and Mr Cullen has already raised £176,711 towards his £250,000 target.

He added: “We are fundraising for community projects for disadvantaged young people, creating opportunities to bring people together to overcome isolation and experience positive attention and affirmation and to hopefully broaden their horizons.

“A third of children our living in poverty in our area after decade of austerity has stripped away many of our vital services and safety nets that help stop vulnerable people falling through those safety nets.

“The measure of a civilised society and caring society is how we treat and care for the most vulnerable in that society.

“In response to the issues that leave people isolated and hopeless, we want to respond with community projects that bring people together so that they may draw from each other’s strengths.

“We would like to help build a more inclusive community where everyone is welcome respected and supported. Please join us in trying to make a difference whether it be big or small.”

To donate, go to www.gofundme.com/f/speedomick-1000-ml-charity?