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Hungover Student Goes On Walk To 'Clear His Head', Ends Up 500 Miles Away

Jess Hardiman

| Last updated 

Hungover Student Goes On Walk To 'Clear His Head', Ends Up 500 Miles Away

A hungover student set out on a walk to 'clear his head' after a night out - only to end up 500 miles away in the South of France.

Barney Rule, 20, went for a walk after deciding to drop out of the University of Edinburgh on 7 September.

The former history and politics student started his stroll in the early hours after leaving a nightclub, but even after walking through whole night, he found he didn't want to stop... and decided to keep going.

Following in the footsteps of Scottish singers The Proclaimers, determined Barney has gone on to walk 500 miles - and, believe it or not, he also plans to do 500 more.

Barney Rule, 20. Credit: Caters
Barney Rule, 20. Credit: Caters

Having set off from his hometown of Chester, Barney is now currently in the South of France and has now been ambling for over a month, and is carrying on to take the scenic route to Spain.

He said: "I had always wanted to walk to Spain but it wasn't until I got drunk with friends last month that I actually began walking.

"It was only by the time I got to the second night, when I reached around 13 miles, that I realised - I was actually walking, actually doing it with no turning back.

"I wasn't sure it was legal, but I knew I needed to clear my head.

"I started off just sleeping rough, but I've picked up a tent and a few other things along the way but time alone on the road seems to be good for me.

Credit: Caters
Credit: Caters

"I've had time to think and really be alone in my thoughts, figure out my next steps and what I want to do.

"But the kindness I've seen from people has been amazing.

"I had a tent with me, and I've asked people if I could pitch it in their land as I've walked to the port in Poole.

"I vividly recall being in Shropshire, and because I'd spent the previous three days really just going for it, because I knew I was only 60 miles away from the port, when I asked, I couldn't understand the accent.

"It might as well have been Mandarin for all I understood, and it was there that I woke up to being surrounded by cows."

Barney set off from Chester and walked on to Ross-on-Wye to Poole, where he jumped onto a ferry to continue on to Cherbourg, Bricbeque, Portbait, St Germain Sur Ay, Rennes, Nantes, Angers, Saintes, Jonzac and Bordeaux.

He claims to average just over 20 miles a day, and says that his trip has been entirely self-funded.

Having spent £30 ($37) as a foot passenger at the port crossing, Barney estimates that in the last month he's spent just £1,000 ($1,250), combining the nights he's had no choice but to stay in a B&B or at a camping site.

Barney enjoying a well-earned pint. Credit: Caters
Barney enjoying a well-earned pint. Credit: Caters

He added: "A lot of people assumed that I was going through a bit of a crisis type thing, where I'd rely on the bank of mum and dad but I haven't.

"It's entirely self funded from the part time work that I did at a bar, and the academic scholarships that I've achieved.

"It was just a case that university wasn't for me - not that it was daft or that I wasn't taking it seriously, and my parents backed me all the way once they realised my thought process.

"Now I feel like I've been learning far more, as I'm more interested now that I'm travelling.

Barney's tent. Credit: Caters
Barney's tent. Credit: Caters

"I know a little Spanish, travelling through France, I've learnt French on the way and the people I've met have been inspiring.

"Before, I'd say it's fair to say I was reliant on social media and that type of thing and it's been a noticeable break - it makes me appreciate it all the more.

"I go off a day by day plan now, exploring and working out my next steps.

"Eventually, when I reach my end destination, Valencia in Spain, my plan is to eventually come back as far as Paris, and write about what I've learnt.

"That's the goal and hopefully by then I'll have a much better plan."

Featured Image Credit: Caters

Topics: UK News, News, student

Jess Hardiman
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