A group of friends have raised more than £2300 for Yorkshire Cancer Research by completing the Virtual London Marathon.
The friends, who first met through a running club, decided to take on the challenge and fundraise for the charity after team member Lynne O’Reilly was diagnosed with breast cancer in July 2019.
Lynne said: “Being diagnosed with cancer was a huge bombshell, not just for me but for my family and friends too. I consider myself very lucky that after having a mastectomy, I needed no other treatment.
“I wanted to give something back to a local charity who are touching the lives of others who have been diagnosed with cancer.”
Jude Morgan, who first proposed the idea of taking on the marathon, explained: “We went out for a dog walk during the pandemic, and it got us thinking about a challenge that we could all get involved in. We finally landed on walking the London Marathon.
“We wanted to do something special for people that are close to us who have had cancer, as well as everyone else who has been diagnosed with cancer in Yorkshire.”
The group took on the Virtual London Marathon in October, and walked the distance around Limestone Way, High Peak and Tissington Trail, in the Peak District. The route was navigated by Lisa Williams and her husband Paul, who ensured the group found their way home at the end of the marathon.
Julie Upton, an oral health practitioner and member of the group, said: “We are the masters of getting lost. I don’t know what we would have done without Lisa and Paul, especially because when we’d been training, we got lost and had to climb up hills by clinging onto blades of grass.”
Thankfully, the team made their way around the 26.2-mile loop in one piece, despite a demanding route.
Julie continued: “It was really challenging. I’ve run marathons before, but walking it was completely different. It tested each of us in different ways, and we had to dig deep.
“Cancer touches everyone, and it’s affected each one of us. I was really proud that we managed to raise so much money for the charity. It was humbling to see the amount raised.”
Lisa added: “Remembering why we were there and that we were raising funds for Yorkshire Cancer Research was a real motivator, especially once we’d reached mile 23 and those last few miles seemed impossible.”
The money raised by the team will go towards funding vital research to help prevent, diagnose and treat cancer in Yorkshire.