A 53-year-old man with Parkinson's has completed a 12 hour croquet marathon to help raise awareness of the condition.

The efforts of Gareth Blake, who took on the challenge on World Parkinson's Day on April 11, have earned the praise of Ceredigion MP Ben Lake. 

The ex-logistics manager, who is a member of Parkinson's UK Cymru's Emlyn and Tivyside group, had to give up his career after he was diagnosed with the condition.

He took up the sport after a taster session with Cardigan Croquet Club, organised through his local Parkinson's group.

"It was hard going at times, but I enjoyed the challenge," said Gareth, who is originally from Holyhead. "I had a 12 hour roster, so someone was with me there all the time while I did the croquet marathon.

"People popped over to support me throughout the day, including members of Cardigan Croquet Club, and Ben Lake also came down to visit. I'm really grateful to everyone who supported me on the day.

"Croquet is something I really enjoy, because it's a great release. It helps with my Parkinson's because it's good exercise for me, and it's gentle exercise too."

Across Wales, World Parkinson's Day was marked by community events.

Parkinson's UK Cymru teamed up with the Parkinson's community to raise awareness of the condition - and shine a light on the determination and creativity of many of the people living with it.

Ben Lake MP said: "I was honoured to be support Gareth Blake as he took on the extraordinary challenge of a 12 hour croquet marathon in Cardigan.

"We know that not enough people really understand Parkinson's. They are not familiar with the condition, or do not know that treatments are limited and that there is no cure.

"Many will not realise just how much people with Parkinson's and their loved ones have to fight to access the care and support they are entitled to."

There are over 40 symptoms of Parkinson's, but the three main symptoms of Parkinson's are a tremor, slowness of movement and muscle stiffness. Almost 8,000 people are currently living with Parkinson's in Wales.

Ana Palazon, Country Director of Parkinson's UK Cymru said: "Gareth's efforts to raise awareness of Parkinson's are truly inspirational. To do 12 hours of croquet in one day is extraordinary. 

“On behalf of the Parkinson’s community here in Wales, I would like to thank him for his ongoing efforts to raise awareness of the condition.

"It is vitally important that people with the condition feel seen and supported by their local communities, and beyond."