A BARROW pensioner who has walked the equivalent of three times round the world for charity is still going strong.

With his trademark placards proudly hanging from his neck 79-year-old Joe Quest from Vulcan Road has become something of a legend among football fans across the country.

And that’s because for the last 21 years the former lorry driver has been putting one step in front of another and has trekked to more than 1,000 football grounds to raise money for charity.

Over the years Mr Quest’s travels have attracted interest from various newspapers as they pick up on his incredible achievements.

In 2002 the York Press reported he had clocked up 9,006 miles to date, by walking to 631 Football League and non-League grounds in five years.

The paper reported Mr Quest had walked the 111 miles to York City’s ground in just four days.

Growing older clearly hasn’t hampered his stamina as he has since added 65,000 miles to his tally and has almost doubled the number of teams he’s visited.

Radio presenter Liam Mulligan was impressed when he met Mr Quest at Cougar Park at the weekend during the Steeton v Bacup Borough match.

Mr Quest had walked 77 miles to the Keighley ground where he watched Steeton lose 0-2 to the Lancashire team.

“Joe is walking and hitching to every football ground in the UK from his home in Barrow in Furness,” Mr Mulligan said on Twitter.

“He’s walked 74,000 miles since 1997 and visited 1,038 stadiums.

“He’s 79-years-old and married 52 years. All for Cancer Research.

“So far he has raised over £250,000. What a guy.”

Even football teams have picked up on Mr Quest's celebrity status.

In 2014 Shrewsbury Town published a feature on their website about an "interesting visitor" to Greenhous Meadow for their game against Brentford.

"Joseph is an incredible man," the club wrote.

"He has been walking to football grounds around the country since the 23rd January 1999.

"Not just league grounds but non-league of all sorts. In that time he has visited 935 grounds, walking 57,004 miles to date.

"His journey to Shrewsbury took four days and was a distance of 291 miles."

Mr Quest has said his campaign to raise money for Cancer Research UK started after a number of relatives died from the disease.