THE friends of a young Cowdenbeath mum were shattered when she died within weeks of being diagnosed with cancer.

But within a matter of days they decided to create a lasting memorial to Stephanie Whitehead, who died aged only 37.

The intrepid team of eight decided to embark on a sponsored walk with a difference on Good Friday to raise funds and they were overwhelmed by the public's generosity.

One of the organisers of the event, Lesley Honeyman, said, "Stephanie was such a tremendous person who had a great personality and was the perfect mum to her two her two sons and daughter, aged between three and ten "It was a real blow to us all when Steph told us that she had been diagnosed with cancer but the last thing we expected was her to died so suddenly.

"We wanted to find some way of raising money to buy a special memorial bench that we could place near her grave in Cowdenbeath cemetery which could be used by her children and family to help remember her".

Lesley was accompanied Ann-Marie Montignani, Margaret Couper, Lana Shearer, Leigh Shearer, Nicola Hunter, Linsey Sinclair and Audrey Bell in the 'Steps for Steph' venture.

They headed up Broad Street, from Steph's home, at around 4pm on Friday and began something that lasted almost seven hours, taking in Lochgelly, Lumphinnans, Cowdenbeath, Hill of Beath and Crossgates.

Continued Lesley, "We found the people in all the communities very supportive.

"For instance we arrived at Lochgelly Fire Station just as the shifts were changing and the two teams were so keen to back us.

"As we went down Cowdenbeath High Street we went into a number of the public houses there and the support we received was unbelievable.

"The generosity of everyone was quite staggering and over the weekend we added up what we had collected and it came to �613.37p.

"There is still a lot more to come in which has been pledged so we really are stunned by the success of the Steps for Steph venture." Steph's mother-in-law, Lorna Whitehead, said, "The girls have done a really magnificent thing by holding the charity walk.

"It shows how much Stephanie meant to them and the backing of the public has been quite overwhelming.

"We cannot thank everyone enough for their tremendous support."