DOZENS of walkers from East Hampshire stepped out together on Saturday to raise money for charity and promote peace.

The five-mile walk, called the Charity Walk for Peace, was organised by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Elders Association (AMEA) and East Hampshire District Council and gave people the chance to come together and do something positive for the community.

The council’s porfolio holder for customer relations Cllr Julie Butler said: “What a wonderful event – and so worthwhile. Thank you to everyone who came to support it and help us raise money for two important local charities.

“It was wonderfully well organised by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Elders Association and I am sure this will be the first of many such events in future years.”

The walk, with a route from Bentley railway station to Alice Holt Forest, raised money for two charities – Home-Start, including Home-Start Butser and Home-Start Weywater, and the Southern Domestic Abuse Society.

The Ahmadiyya Muslim Association has a strong connection to the East Hampshire area as every July it hosts Jalsa Salana, a three-day religious festival in East Worldham which welcomes more than 38,000 people.

Regional Head Charity Walk for Peace and AMEA UK Rizwan Khan said: “We are indebted to East Hampshire District Council for supporting the Charity Walk for Peace, an event that attracted residents as well as members of the Ahmadiyya Muslim community together to raise a handsome amount of money for local charities.

“By working together we have further entrenched a strong community bond which is essential towards promoting peace and good community cohesion.

“Among the key principles of Islam are to help and care for those in need and also to live in peace with our neighbours. This Walk for Peace has enabled us to achieve both these principles.”