A MUM and dad from Witney walked a gruelling 100km along the River Thames to for a group which supports them in raising their autistic son.

Martin and Adele Hambridge attend Oxfordshire-based Parents Talking Asperger’s (PTA) – which supports nearly 2,000 families across the county – for support with their 13-year-old son Liam, who attends LVS Oxford school in Begbroke.

Asperger syndrome is a form of autism which affects how people view the world and interact with others.

Earlier this month the pair completed the Thames Path Challenge, raising about £1,000 by walking the route of the river from Bishop’s Park, near Putney Bridge in London, to Henley-on-Thames, in just two days.

Mr Hambridge said the challenge was tough – but that supporting the group helped get him through.

He said: “This was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.

"I felt like giving up half-way through because walking through the night and going without sleep was so difficult.

“I am so glad that I made it to the end. Being part of PTA means so much to me as an autism parent and we’ve have made life-long friends.

"I just had to do it.”

Organised by Action Challenge, thousands of walkers traversed the route along the river in order to raise funds for various charities over the weekend of September 9 and 10.

Mr and Mrs Hambridge took on the daunting walk alongside Banbury mum and PTA member Christina Morris.

Mrs Hambridge used to be an emergency care assistant but now works alongside her husband, who owns Just Right Autos in Witney.

She said: “I’m not sure my poor blistered feet will ever be the same again.

"At times, the challenge was so difficult but I wanted to reach the end for the cause.

"I can’t thank PTA enough for giving us support and understanding. PTA has changed our lives for the better.”

PTA is a Christian faith-based group operating from The Baptist Centre in Middleton Cheney near Banbury.

It supports nearly 2,000 families in the area both in person and by phone as well as offering support nationwide and overseas online.

For more information go to parents-talking-aspergers.co.uk