A man with insulin dependent diabetes is to receive a top nationwide award after completing a major walking challenge.

Julian Pablo, from Somerset, will be presented with a Diabetes UK Inspire Award for finishing a 500-mile walk along a mountain range which took him 42 days.

The 57-year-old raised £2,000 which was split between the charity and the organisation Veterans in Action.

The former soldier and police office, who now works as a carpenter, was diagnosed with diabetes in 2016 after he developed pancreatitis.

Speaking to the Yeovil Express newspaper, Julian said: ““I am so proud to be nominated for this award. When I was first diagnosed I thought I would have to give up so much – but the team helped me understand more about my condition which, in turn, gave me the confidence to complete the challenge.”

Phaedra Perry, regional head of Diabetes UK South West, said: “During Julian’s walk he endured considerable personal hardships including falling, after the track gave way while walking in the Ariege mountain region.

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“Too steep to clamber up on his own he had to run a chord and ferry his gear and himself back up. We are all in awe of what he achieved in order to raise vital funds for us.

“Our volunteers and fundraisers are out there working hard in the community day in and day out.

“Our much-needed work wouldn’t be possible without their incredible support and I would like to extend my sincere thanks to all of our volunteers who make an enormous difference through their support.”

The annual Inspire Awards are hosted by Diabetes UK and were created to recognise the invaluable contribution of the volunteers and groups that go above and beyond for people living with diabetes, and to thank them for their commitment.

However, due to COVID-19, this year the awards ceremony will be hosted virtually.

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