MORE than 200 walkers took on the challenge of orienteering in the dark for a good cause - raising more than £10,000 in the process.

The Rotary Club of Taunton Vale held its annual Moonraker Challenge on October 5, which saw 228 walkers in 39 teams take part.

They set off at night, orienteering their way in the dark around either a short course of eight miles, or long course of 15 miles.

Questions had to be answered on the way about clues walkers could see or, in some cases, things they couldn’t.

Awards are given for most questions answered and most sponsorship money raised.

A spokesperson for the event said: "The event didn’t quite live up to its title of Moonraker Challenge, as it was overcast with occasional heavy rain.

"Finding their way to Halse Village Hall led them to hot pasties and soup which was served by members of Taunton Vale Inner Wheel.

"Long route walkers then headed back out to finish the second half of their 15 miles to finally finish back where they started at SCM Handling wet and weary but proud of having made it round in what can only be described as ‘not ideal’ conditions."

The Rotary Club was supported by more than 50 'backroom' members, friends and family and thanked Raynet [Communications] and First Ambulance for helping ensure everyone’s safety and MHA Monahans, MHA Monahans Wealth and Porter Dodson for sponsorship.

More than £10,000 - including Gift Aid - is expected to be raised, with the money set to assist St Margaret’s Hospice Care, Arc and Taunton Vale Rotary Club’s local charities in their public work.

Somerset County Gazette:

WINNERS: Long course specialists, Team Bigwood

The winners were:

Winners of the short course were: The Blister Sisters – Emma Clasby, Kat Ellis, Laura Perry, Claire Uppington and Diana Flores.

Three teams tied for runners up: The Tramps, Elms Elite and Porters Moonwalkers.

Long course winners were: Team Bigwood – Thomas Barham, James Barham, William Barham, Helen Barham, Andrew O’Connor and Harvey O’Connor.

In second place were We Thought It Was A Disco, and third place went to Moonage Daydreamers.

Taunton Vale Rotary President Kathryn Robinson-Burge thanked all those taking part and especially the people of Taunton for their co-operation and monetary support.

There will be a presentation of prizes on November 11 at Somerset County Cricket Club, where teams will receive trophies and certificates, and sponsorship money collected.