A record runner, a woman who suffered from a rare disease of the spine just three years ago, an 18-year-old running in memory of his uncle and two people raising funds for Mencap for very personal reasons are just a few of the participants in this year’s London Marathon.
History was made when Mike Sheridan of the Newbury Athletics Club became the first British runner over 70 to complete the race in less than three hours.
The 72-year-old completed the 26.2-mile course in an official time of 2: 59.37, to put his name in the history books. Mr. Sheridan also became only the third person in the world to achieve this feat.
The 2021 event – the 41st London Marathon – has been postponed from its usual April date to Sunday October 3 due to restrictions linked to the coronavirus pandemic.
As the sun was shining and the rain the day before cleared, more than 36,000 runners headed to the capital to compete in the 26.2 mile event. Across the country, thousands more participated virtually, running wherever they could.
Thank you to everyone who sent in their stories and photographs from this year’s London Marathon. Here is an overview of the local runners who have made themselves proud.
James Mitchell of Woolton Hill completed the marathon in four hours 54 minutes. In doing so, he raised over £ 6,700 for Mencap.
He said it was an “amazing day”, and the support in London was “phenomenal”.
His motivation for supporting Mencap is his brother Rupert, who has Down syndrome.
Andrew Mitchell, known as Mitch, raised £ 3,500 for New Life Special Care Babies after running the marathon on Sunday.
Mr. Mitchell, who lives in Hermitage, completed the marathon in 4 hours, 18 minutes and 19 seconds.
Donations for her challenge came from all over the world, including Australia, Germany, Singapore, Malaysia, the United States, the Netherlands and Norway.
Mr Mitchell said: “I have played charity golf days for many years but decided to push myself and run the prestigious London Marathon.
“I love supporting this fantastic charity and the pain was worth it for the wonderful donations it generated.”
The charity, now in its 27th year, is raising funds to purchase specialized neonatal life-saving equipment for hospitals such as Swindon, Reading, Basingstoke and Oxford.
Charity CEO Trevor Goodall added, “We are now focused on bringing a well-known personality on board as an Ambassador to help us take the charity to the next level and achieve the next million pounds. “
Charlie Hide, who is currently studying for the National Graduate Diploma in Graphic Design at University Center Newbury, completed the course in five hours and 50 minutes.
Victoria Burden, UCN, said: “We are all incredibly proud of his incredible achievement. Charlie has waited a long time to run the marathon and it was a stop and a start for him, so finally achieving this achievement is incredible. “
Luke McEnhill of Compton finished the distance at the age of just 18; run in memory of his uncle Jonathan Edwards, who died of motor neuron disease in 2019 at the age of 47.
Luke finished in six hours eight minutes despite “a struggle at the halfway point”.
So far he has raised £ 1,720 for the Motor Neuron Disease Association.
This was Nicola Meadows’ first marathon and she ran the 26.2 miles to raise money for the Brain and Spine Foundations, after suffering from the rare disease of Cauda Equina Syndrome.
Nicola, who lives in Woolton Hill, said: “The mission of the Brain and Spine Foundation is to improve the quality of life for people affected by neurological conditions by providing expert information, support and education. In 2018, I suffered from Cauda Equina Syndrome and I was remarkably fortunate to be able to choose to run the London Marathon. “
So far she has raised over £ 1,700.
The Chaffer family took part in the London Marathon Challenge to raise funds for Newbury Soup Kitchen.
Kelvin Chaffer, who has run the London Marathon twice before, took part in this year’s virtual event as part of a larger team with his company Lifecycle Software.
His five-year-old son Dexter also ran a little over a mile non-stop in the pouring rain to boost his father’s fundraising, while his seven-year-old son Zac did a little more than 10 miles by bike to support the cause.
Steve Fothergill competed in Sunday’s marathon – 27 years after his last race.
The 68-year-old East End man was running to raise money for the Alzheimer Society.
He has raised over £ 1,300 so far and has been applauded along the way by his wife Yolande, daughters Odette and Hannah and son-in-law Iain.
Georgina Lofthouse has been racing for three years and has said her goal is to “run in the most iconic of races”.
She took part in this year’s marathon to raise funds for her good friend Vickie, who suffers from incurable and life-threatening complications from sepsis.
She said: “The race itself was a fantastic experience. I loved running past iconic buildings and soaking up the amazing atmosphere.
“Anyway, the over twenty six mile marathon is still a long way and I found it tough in the finals. As I approached the finish line I was like ‘never again. that ‘, but then with the medal around my neck I thought’ well maybe ‘. “
She has so far raised over £ 1,700.
Sarah Everden and her friend Alice ran the London Marathon this year to benefit the charity Mencap.
She did the 26.2 miles in three hours and 56 minutes and said “it was a great event, although my legs are feeling it now”.
She added, “Mencap provides incredible support to individuals and their families. Any donation for this great cause is greatly appreciated.”
Mike Ellis, from Hungerford, participated in the London Marathon for Calm – a children’s charity based in Swindon.
He completed the marathon in five hours four minutes and has so far raised £ 1,300 for the charity.
Gary Shaughnessy, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease seven years ago, competed in the marathon as part of a series of fundraising events he is completing this year.
He was joined in his marathon effort by his family – his wife Janet, Michael, Daniel and Beth.
Mr Sheridan was one of five members of Newbury AC who completed the London Marathon over the weekend.
Mark Flitton led the club members home with a massive 2:43:01 PB, while Mike Wheeler (3:16:30), Jenny Eaton (3:38:43) and Sue Van Huyssteen (4: 03:20).