03 February 2018
Dr Lewis Owens’ route took him between his home town of Ruislip, West London, and Canterbury, via six churches named after St Martin the patron saint of the poor, homeless and disadvantaged.
“Prison education is a cause St Martin himself, a great champion of the poor and imprisoned, would have appreciated greatly. I wanted to support PET because I think the work the charity does is so important – it provides people with a lifeline, and doesn’t give up on people.”
Lewis, 44, who now runs an education consultancy, came to higher education learning at a later age. He struggled to engage with school and left with no A Levels, but later returned to higher education and was awarded a PhD from Cambridge University. This background, says Lewis, also informs his interest in PET.
“Like many teenagers, I rebelled at school and as a result failed my A-levels, but fortunately I managed to get my education back on track subsequently. But despite being successful, I want people to know I have struggled initially, particularly people who are struggling now in the prison system.”
Lewis now volunteers at HMP Pentonville in the chaplaincy and he will also shortly start mentoring young prisoners at HMYOI Feltham.
He began his challenge event on 23 March 2018, from St Martin’s Church, Ruislip and ended up, ten days later on Easter Sunday, at St Martin’s Church, Canterbury. En route he stopped at churches dedicated to St Martin at Trafalgar Square in London, Chelsfield, Eynsford and Detling in Kent.
The total distance covered was around 100 miles and his aim was to raise £10,000. The fundraising comes at a time of particular need for PET, as we fight to meet record demand for courses.
If you are interested in doing your own challenge, get in touch with our Fundraising Officer Anthony – we’d love to hear from you!
© Prisoners' Education Trust 2023