Man told he was never to walk again is set for 24 hour charity row at The Brunel

By Claire Dukes - 30 July 2018


A Swindon man who was once told he would never walk again is set to complete a gruelling 24 hour row to raise money for charity.

Detlef Jenkins, 45, will be rowing and aiming to raise £2,000 for Cancer Research UK in memory of his father Malcom Roy Jenkins who passed away in 2014, after suffering from complications due to cancer and a ruptured aneurysm.  

Detlef’s row takes place in The Brunel Centre and will begin at 10am on 2 August, finishing at 10am on 3 August, which would be the fourth anniversary of his father’s passing. 

In preparation for this challenge, Detlef has been training with Buzz Gym for the past eight months, supported by Personal Trainer Aaron Dale.  Go Gym Stuff in The Brunel will also be providing Detlef with the electrolytes and supplements he needs to support his challenge in the day before and day after the row, as well as throughout the 24 hours.   

Detlef said: “I’m looking forward to completing the 24 hour row.  It will be a challenge but it is part of my journey to say goodbye to my Dad and raise money too in his memory. 

“Most people will do a marathon but I decided on rowing.  I injured my back in 2010 and it took four years for me to be able to walk properly so I’m not one to be told I can’t do something!  I will be taking a one minute break every hour during the challenge, but other than that the focus is on staying rowing for 24 hour period.

“Buzz Gym was keen to help as soon as I mentioned the challenge to them.  Aaron has put together a training programme to prepare me, including weight work as well as spin and rowing to build up my cardio-vascular strength.”

Jane Stewart, Acting Centre Manager of The Brunel, added: “Detlef’s challenge is truly impressive and one that we, together with our retailers Buzz Gym and Go Gym Stuff, are proud to support and keep our doors open late into the evening so that people can come and cheer him on.”

Triple Two will also be open until 11pm on 2 August in The Crossing for supporters to grab sustenance to keep them going.

Detlef will be rowing under the escalators opposite F Hinds in The Brunel Arcade.

To sponsor Detlef’s row, visit or text ROWD81 and the amount you want to give to 70070 – to sponsor £10, text ROWD81 £10 to 70070.  

For more information on The Brunel, visit

Your Comments

Be the first to comment on this article

Login or Register to post a comment on this article

Registered in England & Wales. No: 4513027, at Arclite House, Hillmead, Swindon SN5 5YN