Running in memory
Charles Paterson first ran the Great North Run for Action Medical Research back in 2008 as a seven foot bottle of Newcastle Brown Ale. Since then he's taken on the half marathon twice more in different outfits. Over the last few years he’s raised nearly £2,000 for Action Medical Research and in 2012 aims to double this by taking part in the Virgin London Marathon. In typical style he has decided to add to the challenge of running 26.2 miles through the streets of London by choosing to do it in a Borat Mankini!
But running is not all about fancy dress for Charles. He runs and fundraises for Action Medical Research because the cause is so close to his heart. “On 4 February 2007 my little boy Daniel was born at just 24 weeks,” he says. “Sadly, he died 10 days later on 14 February. This is the reason why I decided to run for Action Medical Research and help fund their research trying to stop babies being born prematurely. Hopefully, through their research and funding, other families will not have to endure the suffering and heartache we went through. Even if Daniel had lived the doctors explained the complications could have gone on for a number of years.”
More than 25 babies die as a result of premature birth every week in the UK, yet so little is known about what causes it and how to prevent it. With the help of people like Charles and the hundreds of runners who take part in an event for Action Medical Research each year we are able to fund vital research aiming to reduce the high rate of premature birth by investigating the causes of early labour and advancing the search for new treatments that could prevent or delay early birth. But there is still so much more to do to stop the suffering of some of the UK's sickest babies and children. As we are an independent charity our runners and fundraisers play an essential part in ensuring we can continue funding life-saving research.
Charles got into running when some friends pursuaded him to run a half marathon with no training at all. He says “I only started training properly after my son died, as this gave me a goal. My PB for the half marathon is now 1 hour 50mins. My aim for the London Marathon is to break the four hours barrier. My training runs are currently up to 15 miles in around two hours so I am hopeful I will hit my target.”
And his tip for others taking on a run this year? “When it comes to training, you get out what you put in”. We wish Charles all the best with his marathon challenge this year and can’t wait to watch him cross that finish line, mankini and all!
If you would like to take on a running challenge for Action Medical Research this year and help stop the suffering of babies and children please take a look at our running events page, if you are already registered for an event you can set up a sponsorship page and raise funds for Action by clicking here.
We're looking for enthusiastic, noisy people to help support our London Marathon runners on 22 April. It is a really fun day out for all the family – with over a million Londoners turning out to watch the race, the atmosphere is amazing. We want to make sure that our runners feel extra special, which is where you come in: we need people to man our cheering positions near London Bridge and along the Embankment from 10.00am to about 5.00pm. We have balloons, clapper sticks, loud hailers and jelly babies to be handed out; we just need some passionate people to come along and make lots of noise for our runners!
We also need people to help out at our post-event reception near Green Park. This is the little oasis for our runners to come and relax in after they have completed the marathon. We are looking for meeters and greeters to direct them to the reception, and possibly a volunteer Paddington to help us stand out.
If you can give up a few hours of your time to help support our runners please email Suzy at email@example.com.