HELPING cats and kittens in need has spurred on a Northwich man to lace up his walking boots and pound the pavement.

Simon Brooks is taking part in Cats Protection 'Nine Mile Challenge', which invites participants to walk, run or cycle nine miles throughout September.

But Simon, who lives with epilepsy, didn’t want to limit himself to just nine miles in a month – he decided to commit to walk the distance every day.

With his own cats Deliah, Squeak and Flora waiting for him at him at home, the 54-year-old put in a lot of training last month, covering more than 100 miles in preparation for the challenge.

Simon said: "I love cats and I wanted to do something to help the charity, and this fitted in well. I plan to take in canals, rivers, parks and towns, pretty much whatever takes my fancy."

Cats Protection is a national network of around 230 volunteer-run branches and 37 centres, helping around 200,000 cats and kittens every year.

Fundraising Mass Participation Officer Abi Young said: "We want to say a huge thank you to Simon for his absolute dedication to this challenge and to the cats in our care who will benefit from all those miles Simon clocks up."

The Nine Mile Challenge started in 2018 and has seen around 200 participants each year take part, raising an impressive £55,000.

Held each September, supporters are able to walk, run, cycle or do whatever they would like to travel the nine miles, either in one go or spread across the month, with the option of nominating a specific Cats Protection branch or centre to receive the sponsorship.

Anyone wishing to contribute to Simon’s fundraiser can donate through his JustGiving page at