A FLOCK of fundraisers headed to Brighton last weekend to take part in the city’s marathon and help raise millions for charity.
Almost 10,000 runners crossed the start line on Sunday, including a large number who had made the small trip west from the Sunshine Coast.
Among them was Paul Marshall who completed the 26.2mile course in aid of ChildLine – the charity help line which is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year.
The 46-year-old managed to reach the end in five hours and 29 minutes, netting a sizeable amount in the process.
Speaking shortly after crossing the finish line, he said, “I decided to run for ChildLine in memory of my brother who died.
“The highlight of the day was getting to the finish line in one piece.”
Ian Turnball was another who took up the challenge.
The manager of the Hydro Hotel was part of a team running in aid of both ChildLine and the Neuroblastoma Alliance UK.
He finished in four hours and 20 minutes and collected £2,250 in sponsorship.
He said, “I would like to say a big thank you to the customers and staff of the Hydro Hotel, my friends and family and the Hailsham Harriers for all the support and advise they gave me to help me complete my first full marathon.
“The event was fantastic and the organisation and support that Brighton showed was absolutely wonderful.”
The Sussex Air Ambulance was another local good cause to benefit from the marathon.
Jason Denny, who lives in Meads, took part to rase money for the charity after seeing first hand the amazing work it does.
His daughter Pearl, who was there armed with a hug at the finish line on Sunday, was injured in a car crash back in 2010.
She was airlifted to hospital in London and made a full recovery.
And it was that quick-fire help which inspired Mr Denny to pound the streets.
He said: “If it was not for the rapid response of the helicopter I’m not sure that she would have made a full recovery so I will always be indebted to them.
“There were quite a few moments [during the marathon] when it got quite tough. I reflected on what the air ambulance did for my daughter.
“That is what kept me going.”
Karen Castle took part to make money for a charity close to her heart.
She said, “I decided to run the Brighton Marathon to raise money for Diabetes UK.
“My husband Paul has been a diabetic for 37 years, since the age of 10.
“Eighteen months ago he was taken seriously ill with complications with his diabetes and now has medical conditions caused by the diabetes which have affected his mobility and cause him to be in constant pain.
“Relieved that he survived I decided to inflict a few hours of pain on myself and run the marathon to raise some money.”
And raise money she did – £430, which was almost double her initial target.