AN elderly woman and hospital volunteer is set to celebrate her birthday by taking on a 49-mile challenge down Southend Pier.

May Hamilton, who will turn 82 in June, is set to walk up and down Southend Pier 20 times to clock up the miles as she raises money for three hospital charities and Mid and South Essex Hospitals charity.

The inspirational lady is also a volunteer driver at Southend hospital.

May said: “I’m walking the equivalent distance between Southend Hospital, Northwick Park Hospital and St Mark’s Hospital, as these are the three hospitals that have helped me throughout my life and I wanted to give something back to say thank you.”

May wears a spinal brace, suffers from fibromyalgia, osteoporosis and osteoarthritis but “firmly believes in being active and pushing myself.”