ROUND UP: Who will be tackling the London Marathon this weekend?
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Thousands of runners will pound the streets of London on Sunday for the 26.2-mile marathon in a bid to raise cash for their charity. Here are just a few of the runners taking part:
CHRIS JONES/ROARY: EVELINA LONDON CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL
A Nailsea man will run the London Marathon dressed as a T-Rex on Sunday.
Chris Jones, who will race under the alias Roary, will complete the 26.2-mile course in a 7ft inflatable T-Rex costume in aid of Evelina London Children’s Hospital, which nursed his cousin James back to health from a life threatening infection when he was just 20 months old.
James was on holiday in Portugal with his parents when he fell and grazed his elbow.
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A few days later he was being transported to A&E in an ambulance with a new strain of infection, much like the MRSA super bug, which is unresponsive to antibiotics.
Chris said: “The infection was eating away the flesh in his upper arm, and only narrowly avoided reaching his brain, so he was very close to losing his life.”
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James is now doing well and enjoying playing football and playing on climbing framed and on trampolines like any other seven year old.
To sponsor Chris, click here.
ED MANN: BRITISH HEART FOUNDATION
A Nailsea doctor will run the London Marathon for not one but two charities on Sunday.
Dr Edward Mann, aged 41, is a North Somerset GP from the Chew Valley and has chosen to split his donations between St Peter’s Hospice and the British Heart Foundation (BHF).
He explained: “As a GP, I have seen first-hand the end of life care provided to patients and the support given to their families by the hospice.
“It makes a huge different to people at one of the worst times you can imagine.
“I lost my father a few years ago to heart failure and I wanted to also support the brilliant work the BHF do.”
Ed said preparing for the 26.2-mile race had been ‘challenging’ juggling training alongside his busy work and family lives and had not been prepared to train in the snow.
However, he said: “It has made me realise if you have a training plan and stick to it, you can end up running distances you never thought you could.”
To sponsor the doctor, visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com/EdwardMann2
CHLOE BIRD: SOUTHMEAD HOSPITAL INTENSIVE CARE UNIT
A 21-year-old from Clevedon will race in memory of her ‘very dear and special friend’ who died last year.
Chloe Bird will run the 26.2-mile course for her friend Harriet Ann Shelley who died at the age of 21 in April 2017 after being involved in a ‘tragic’ road accident in Bristol.
Chloe told the Times Southmead Hospital staff ‘worked relentlessly’ to try to save Harriet who had ‘helped me through some very tough times’.
She said: “They worked 24/7 with compassion, dedication and commitment for one week to save her.
“I am really excited about running the marathon, it has been a dream of mine and although the training is tough, I cannot wait to give something back to this charity to thank them for all the hard work they did to try and save beautiful Harriet.”
Chloe has been running about 30 miles a week in preparation as well as studying and being a mum.
To show your support for Chloe, visit https://shctribute.everydayhero.com/uk/chloe
ANGELA ROBINSON: AGE UK
Doctor and mother-of-two Angela Robinson will take on her first marathon this weekend.
The 39-year-old Failand woman started running when her husband Andrew was diagnosed with lymphoma in 2014.
She said ‘luckily’ the cancer was caught early and he was treated with surgery and radiotherapy.
Angela added: “My running started at the same time. I have never considered myself to be very sporty but wanted to challenge myself and try and raise some money for a fantastic cause.”
Angela chose Age UK for its ‘invaluable’ work it carries out in the community.
She added: “Through my work, I witness first-hand the impact of long term conditions and social isolation.”
To sponsor Angela, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/angela-robinson21
BETH TURPIN: DIABETES UK
A Yatton woman living with diabetes has decided to raise money for the charity which is ‘very close to home’.
Beth Turpin, aged 23, was diagnosed with type one diabetes eight years ago but said it has ‘never let it stop her’.
She said: “Diabetes causes me struggles day in and day out with the amount of injections and finger pricks I do, plus with how low it makes my immune system.
“I want to not only raise money but raise awareness around the stigma about diabetes and how it is not to do with being fat, overweight and unfit.
“Not only do I have diabetes but so does my sister – so my family are very affected by this horrible illness.”
Beth has completed three half-marathons and hopes taking part in the London Marathon will ‘push her’.
The young woman said she cannot wait to cross the finish line with the support around the course from her family and friends.
To show your support for Diabetes UK and Beth, click here.
JACKIE HICKS: CHILDREN’S LIVER DISEASE FOUNDATION
A Portishead chiropodist will tick off an item on her bucket list as she gears up for the London Marathon.
Jackie Hicks, aged 55, was ‘elated’ when she earned a place on the CLDF’s marathon team and has prepared a fitness programme to get ready for the 26.2-mile marathon.
She chose the cause after close family friend, Lisa, contracted a virus which causes acute liver failure when she was three years old.
Jackie said: “As a close family friend, it is wonderful to see Lisa, 25 years on, with her own family.
“Without the research projects and support of CLDF, thousands of children would not be living long and fulfilled lives.”
She hopes to raise £2,000 for the ‘fantastic charity’, and you can support her at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/jackie-hicks4
LUCY VOWLES: ABOVE AND BEYOND
A 36-year-old Wraxall woman has already passed her £5,000 target for her chosen charity.
Lucy Vowles will be running the marathon for Above & Beyond, a charity which supports patients at the Bristol hospitals.
Lucy said the charity has helped her and a number of her friends and family through some ‘tough times’ as well as give ‘outstanding care’.
She added: “It is a very small charity in comparison to many other and it’s resources are limited to help promote and spread the word of this amazing organisation.
“Bristol hospitals are made a more comfortable place by the work Above & Beyond continues to do and sadly we all know people who have had to use the hospital so I feel very passionate about giving something back.”
With the support of a running coach in Nailsea, Lucy has been able to complete a 20-mile run despite having a foot injury.
To sponsor her, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/lucy-vowles2
SARAH COGZELL: HELEN ARKELL DYSLEXIA CHARITY
A Backwell mum who lives with dyslexia will complete the marathon for charity on Sunday.
Sarah Cogzell was not diagnosed with dyslexia until she was 34 and hopes to raise awareness about the learning difficulty.
Sarah’s son and daughter are also beginning to show signs of being dyslexic and the 40-year-old thinks a lot of people ‘do not understand what it actually is’ and how it can affect someone.
She added: “It makes life a bit more of a challenge both having it and trying to support your children with it.”
Sarah is confident she will complete the course but hopes to do it in under four hours if possible.
To donate, visit uk.viginmoneygiving.com/sarah-cogzell-SAVMLMBONDS3332018 -818477
JO HUGHES: NATIONAL AUTISTIC SOCIETY
A ‘Wonder Woman’ from Backwell hopes to conquer the London Marathon for her son this weekend.
Jo Hughes, aged 47, has been raising money for the National Autistic Society in support of her son, aged 16, who was diagnosed with autism when he was three years old.
She said: “I am very supportive of its recent campaigns which are focussing on raising awareness of the needs of those with autism and in reducing the time it takes for families to get a diagnosis.”
Jo is ‘excited’ to complete the race as the superhero, saying she spent so much time ‘wondering why my son was not behaving and developing like other boys’.
To support the mum, visit uk.virginmoneygiving.com/JoHughes7