After weeks of gruelling training sessions, hundreds of people from across Stamford, Bourne and Rutland will be donning their running shoes today ready to take on this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon.
More than 25 members from running club, Stamford Striders are set to take on the 26.2 mile race, including Emma Snowden, who is running the London Marathon for the first time in memory of her father, who died from cancer in January last year.
Strider Richard Rae will be taking part in his fifth London Marathon in aid of Cancer Research UK and the Cystic Fibrosis Research Trust, after recently losing his brother and sister to cancer.
Uffington farmer, James Genever will be running the London Marathon this year in aid of Guide Dogs for the Blind. James’ father lost his sight following a horrific farming accident in November 2004, but his life has been enhanced by his guide dog Pablo since he arrived in 2006.
Jodie Cunnington, 20, from Stamford will be taking on the London Marathon for the first time this year in aid of Leukaemia Care. She has been offered a golden bond place to run for Leukaemia Care, a national blood cancer support charity that offers advice and support for anyone affected by blood cancer.
Veterinary surgeon, Caroline Gasper, 40, from Rutland, who has completed marathons across the world is gearing up to take on her 10th marathon, this year for the Dogs Trust, a cause close to her heart having worked as a vet for more than 16 years.
Marathon mum, Penny Hedley Lewis, 66, from Corby Glen, will be taking on her 10th London Marathon and will this year be joined by her daughters, Melissa, 32, and Amanda, 30 and her son-in-law, Pete Callas, 33. This year Penny will be running for the British Red Cross, a charity that she has supported for many years, as President of the Lincolnshire branch of the British Red Cross Society.
One of Anna’s Hopes fairies will be donning her wings and her running shoes for this year’s London Marathon to help raise vital funds for the local charity. Sarah Parkes, 45, from Stamford is hoping to raise £5,000 for Anna’s Hope, the leading children’s Brain Tumour charity in the East of England.
Katie Bangs, 24, from Oakham will be running for Spinal Research in memory of her sister Kimberley, who was born three months premature with Spina Bifida and died shortly after she was born.
Janine Donlan, 34, from Oakham will be running this year’s London Marathon to help raise vital funds for Chilldren with Cancer.
Janine, who lost her dad, Tony, 63, to cancer in 2002, has previously raised money for both Cancer Research and the Teenage Cancer Trust.
Two brothers from Bourne will be running the London Marathon for the first time in aid of two causes close to their hearts. Paul Thorley. 41, will be running in aid of the Multiple Sclerosis Society, whilst his brother Darren, 45, will be running to help raise funds for the charity Sense.
Danielle Tempest, 36, from Bourne is running the marathon for MacMillan Cancer Support in memory of her sister, Michelle Surtees who lost her battle with cancer 10 years ago.
Friends, Dale Falkner, 31, and Alex Grant, 26, from Bourne will be running for Meningitis Now, in aid of Dale’s son Sebastian, aged one year old, who has already been diagnosed with Meningitis twice.
Police officer and member of Stamford Striders, Helen Morris, 44, from Stamford is running for The British Heart Foundation.
Horse riding instructors Emma Fennell, 26 and Demi Goldsmith, 19, from Uffington, will be running this year’s London Marathon for Heart Research UK.
Therapist Liz Clare, 29, from Baston, is running for the Matt Hampson Foundation, while care worker, Samantha Wright, 30, who lives in Bainton will be running the London Marathon for the first time in aid of the charity Mind.
Emily Connell, 30, from Stamford will be running in aid of Thorpe Hall in memory of her Auntie, Theresa Bryan. She has already raised in excess of £2,000 including a £520 donation from Stamford Belles football team.
Emily’s friend, Abigail Yardley will also be running for Thorpe Hall on the day, as will Suzanne Ostler.
Alongside the London Marathon, Nick Crowson, 42, from Barnack will compete in the Evesham Ultra Marathon which takes place in the Cotswolds, with a total 4,000 feet ascent.
l See next week’s Mercury to find out how the runners got on.