Former Burnley homeless man begins hiking after changing his life

A man who slept on the street with nothing but clothes on his back has returned to long-distance hiking after changing his life.

Liam O’Sullivan, 59, slept under bridges and on park benches after being unable to cope with the death of his wife before visiting the Emmaus homeless charity in Burnley there is three years old.

After working with the charity, he was able to find work in the charity’s Rochdale department store.

The lifestyle change brought Liam together with his passion for long distance walking.

Liam at Kinder Scout in the Peak District

Whereas before he had walked for miles around to find a safe place to sleep, Burnley and the wider countryside became a source of great joy to Liam, providing the opportunity to observe wildlife and relax. loosen.

Liam said: “Walking now is completely different from when I was homeless. I walked away from everyone because it was quite dangerous.

“I slept where I could and kept moving forward. Emmaus really helped me.

Lancashire Telegraph: Liam at Hameldon Hill near Burnley

Liam at Hameldon Hill near Burnley

“Not enough people appreciate Emmaus for what it does for you.

“Every purchase people make from our department store helps someone in need.

“Emmaus was a lifeline for me.”

Liam’s best spots in Burnley include Rowley Lake and Townley Park as well as the village of Edale and Kinder Scout in the Peak District, and Ingleborough, the second highest mountain in the Yorkshire Dales.

When he started walking, Liam did not have the proper shoes and clothing to go out for a walk and Emmaus intervened, using the money from the Rochdale store to buy Liam a pair of walking boots and a full set of shoes. ‘waterproof.

Lancashire Telegraph: Liam at Kinder Scout in the Peak District

Liam at Kinder Scout in the Peak District

Emmaus Burnley Director Stephen Buchanan said: “Since Liam arrived with us it has been a pleasure to see him enjoy the great outdoors again.

“Walking is fantastic for the people who live and work with us, with many benefits for their physical and mental well-being.

“I know Liam was kind enough to take some of the other people we support on his travels.

Lancashire Telegraph: The new camping gear Emmaus provided to Liam

The new camping equipment that Emmaus provided to Liam

“As a person born and raised in Burnley, and from his past experiences he knows some of the most spectacular places in town and the best viewpoints to visit.”

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