Wednesday, 13th November 2019
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Why do we run?

by Press Release
Friday 22nd November 2013
Tags  BATHALF   |   Bath Half Marathon   |   2014 Bath Half Marathon   |   Dermot OLeary   |   Greg James   |   Coppafeel

Runners signed up for the 2014 Bath Half Marathon (March 2, 2014) tell us the reasons why they run

The Bath Half Marathon - or 'BATHALF' is one of the longest established and most popular city centre road events in the UK. It is also one of the largest charity fundraisers in the South West and in 2013, runners raised a record breaking £2 million for more than 80 charities.

Every year, there is a number of runners who have an interesting story to tell, be it a fundraising story, an inspiring personal challenge or a story that will tug at the heart strings.

Below is a summary of the most touching UK wide stories from women taking part in the BATHALF on 2 March next year.


Angela MacAusland - Bath

Two years ago I couldn't run for a bus, but I was inspired by a few ultra marathoners I met and they said they started running 1 km, then 2km, and now run upwards of 30 miles plus at a time. I got my running shoes on and started to run. I haven't stopped. Bath Half was my first half, I have now done three and am signed up for another three. I hope to complete a marathon in 2013.

David Tells – Trowbridge

I started running and completed my first BATHALF four years ago because my daughter was being treated in the special care baby unit in Bath. Last year I was able to run the last 150m and cross the line with her.

Louenna Edwards - Shrewsbury

My cousin Sarah Edwards, passed away last Christmas time due to a fatal Asthma attack. Many people don't seem to realise the dangers of Asthma and I would like to heighten awareness of these dangers.

Dominic Singleton – Keynsham

Two years ago I ran the BATHALF for the second time.  Two weeks later I was operated on for prostate cancer.  Now back in good health, I want to run it again, raising money for Prostate Cancer UK.

Julia Owens - Chelmsford

My husband and I run a race a month, both in the UK and abroad to race funds and awareness of the work done by MRSA Action UK.  I lost my father-in-law due to the infection during a routine operation.  We have raised over £2,000 in the last couple of years.

Paul Cockhill – Bath

Running with my son and daughter to raise money for an Aids charity in Tanzania called Sahu. We visited Tanzania this year and are inspired to raise the charity profile and help build a new community for them. We are a small UK family based charity.

Jane Studd - Enfield

I used to lead a sedentary lifestyle, including drinking and smoking but gave it up in mid my 30's and haven't looked back since. Hoping to enter the elite London Marathon race in 2014 based on half marathon times. Recently gave up my career as an HR Manager of 18 years to become a personal trainer specialising in exercise referral (obesity, diabetes, CHD, etc) to help others make that change that changed my life.  www.hello2fitness.co.uk  

Richard Hale – London

I have had two liver transplants.

Anne Hedges - Bath

I lost my husband in 2010 and took up running. I then lost both parents to dementia and often race to raise money for Dementia UK.

Jim Bennet – Saltash

I am the treasurer of my local Church Council and want to raise money to maintain our two grade 1 listed Church Buildings. We recently suffered a lightning thunderbolt which caused £300,000 of damage.

Laura Packham - Bath

I work for the overnight district nursing service for BANES and palliative care is a big part of my job. If we didn't have the help and support of Dorothy house our jobs would be very different. This half marathon is a huge challenge for me personally as I have multiple sclerosis and find running difficult but not impossible!!  

Philip Kelley – Bath

I run the BATHALF every year raising money for Cystic Fibrosis, because my 10 year old daughter has the condition. I was also a torchbearer in 2012 on the day the Olympic Torch came to Bath in recognition of our family's fundraising efforts.

Sophie Street - Exeter

I'm running for the Wedding Wish Well Foundation who organise and fund weddings for the terminally ill or those with life threatening conditions. Set up by my friend and former colleague, mum of one Naomi Thomas, who is 29 and has terminal cancer and had the wedding day of her dreams last year. We are trying to get a team together for this great and different cause see www.weddingwishingwell.org.uk

David Blake – Bath

I run for WIZZYBUG, the Bath RUH based charity for children with cerebral palsy. I will be running in memory of my sister who was disabled and died aged nine.

Jessica Ohnstad - Dorchester

Ella Pallister died this year when she fell from her horse show jumping in Dorset. The Dorset and Somerset air ambulance flew her to the Southampton Neurology centre but unfortunately could not save her. She was a talented horse woman and the charity is raising money for the air ambulance and neurology department in Southampton.

Colin David Hale – Bristol

It will be my 29th BATHALF, and I just "love it"!

Harriet Beveridge - Bath

I co-wrote: 'Will It Make the Boat Go Faster? Olympic-Winning Strategies for Everyday Success' with gold medallist Ben Hunt Davis. So I'm trying to practice what I preach by setting interesting goals to learn/grow etc.

Barry Taylor – Newport

After having three young friends pass away I began running seriously. I started at the bottom hardly managing to run at all and now am hoping to work towards running ultras. When it gets tough I only have to think of my friends and push on.

Gemma Hudson - Westbury

I recently lost five and half stone so I can do charity events. I have raised a total of around £3000 for charities because of this, and my friend recently lost her dad so running it for him too.

Dave Acheson – Bath

Raising money for Dorothy House in memory of my mother and also to contribute to a fund for Dorothy House in memory of a late work colleague.

Katherine Alderton – Bury St Edmonds

Me and my best friend, Georgina are running our first Half Marathons in aid for Jennifer's Trust after we lost our best friend on the 03.01.2009, who had lived with SMA for her whole life.

Jamie Gillespie – Watford

I’m an amputee (left leg below the knee) running on a blade.

Natasha Moore - Melksham

Lost Mother in Law suddenly to Cancer in April 2012 and it hit us all really badly. I want to do something for her! We have a Tulip fund in her memory for our Dorothy House fundraising and want to add to it.

Martin Abrahams – Bristol

I was due to race the 2013 BATHALF, it would have been my first half marathon and on a training run two weeks prior to the race I clocked 1:28 for 12.5. Then on Monday 18th February my two year old daughter was diagnosed with Leukaemia (A.L.L.). My family's world was turned upside down. Needless to say that I dropped out of the race but my entry has been rolled over to 2014. If Jessica is doing well with treatment I shall be running for a Leukaemia charity (TBC).

Karen Harnott - Poole

I am running to raise money for the Royal Marines after my amazing friend died in Afghanistan last March.  This charity has been an amazing support to my friend who was left behind with their young son.  She is also running the half with me. 

Will Dawe – Bruton

Running with the Band of Brothers, a team made up mostly of students, teachers and parents at King's School Bruton.

Madelaine Barlow - Ivybridge

I have scoliosis and have grown up with many health problems, which included being in a back brace for three years. I started running a year ago to improve my health and although I struggle with trapped nerves running has totally changed my life. Unfortunately six months ago my younger brother was diagnosed with Arthritis (he's 14). He and my family are going through a really difficult time at the moment. He's lost weight, muscle tone and has gone from a very sporty teenager to a boy that can't stand without wincing in pain. I'm raising money for Arthritis UK to support him. To show him you can have health problems and come through them and to give my family something positive to focus on.

Ben Jenkins – Bath

Tenth year in a row this year!

Jo Bridger - Bath

I have lost over 100lbs in weight over six years and started running as part of that. I decided that I'd do the 2014 Bath Half while helping at the 2013 event, but I was diagnosed with breast cancer three days later. However I decided I am going to do it anyway.

Michael Stanley – Bath

Running to raise funds in memory of my late partner Amanda, who died in the RUH cancer ward two years ago, aged 39.

Nicola Taylor - Burton

I am running in memory of my husband a Royal Marine who was killed in Afghanistan in March 2012 the Bath Half falls close to the second anniversary of his death. I have never entered a race before but my husband ran Marathons and triathlons and I thought it would be fitting to raise money for the charity that supported myself and my son the most in a way my husband would approve of.

David Orme – Reading

Raising money for pancreatic cancer research in memory of Jackie Orme, mother of two young daughters and former Bath resident. Last year a team of 200 friends, family and colleagues ran the half marathon (won both male & female corporate challenge) and 100 ran in the family fun run. We raised over £130k. And we're back!

Michelle Coulson - Manchester

Myself and my boyfriend are cycling around the world (29 countries and 27,000km) next July for charity: water, and we aim to do several fundraising events beforehand to raise money and awareness.

Thomas Fieldhouse – Bath

I am in awe of the maternity team at Bath RUH. My son was delivered there last year, and the care and support that they gave to my wife, son and even myself was wonderful. I am raising funds for the ward in recognition of both their kindness and professionalism.

Josephine Davies  and Lizzy Hausey – Bradford on Avon

It’s a family thing for us. My children and I run in memory of my husband who died eleven years ago of cancer in the RUH. He was a great man who is sorely missed, and my two boys and my daughter and I wish to do this for him and anyone else who have suffered losing a key family member. It’s a family challenge to keep all together and love each other through tough times and have some fun doing it as well.

Tom Janicot – Bath

Running with the University of Bath SU Sabbatical Officer team to raise money for charity! The team: SU President: Ellie Hynes, Sport Officer: Tom Janicot, Community Officer: Sally Williamson, Activities Officer: Scott Burfiend, Education Officer: Peter Hachfeld.

Jenny Covey - Lichfield

I have just won my battle against breast cancer!

Phillip Dyson – Epsom

International Concert Pianist, running for favourite charity: The Buigiri School for the Blind in Tanzania.

Sophie James - Cardiff

My twin successfully beat cancer many years ago.  However, I dedicate this run to my fantastic A-level student, Jonathan Gallimore (1990-2010).  He was an outstanding musician (playing trumpet at county level - I accompanied him in a young musician competition), sportsman and a wonderful young man.   He had a year's remission for which we must be grateful for the research for giving him.  Stem cell treatment was unsuccessful - but again, another offer of hope that wouldn't be there without research.  I remain in touch with the family, awards are donated in Jon's memory, and they are delighted that I am taking part in this event.  I learned far more from Jonathan than I ever taught him.

Paul Carpenter – Truro

I am running with a group of therapists to support a charity called CLEAR - Children Linked to or Experiencing Abusive Relationships. We provide counselling support for children who have been abused or who have experienced domestic violence at home.

Julie Hyde - Cheltenham

Our gorgeous two year old son Freddie was born with a life threatening heart condition and has since had two life saving open heart surgeries at the amazing Bristol Children’s Hospital. My husband and I are doing numerous charity sports events to raise as much money as possible for the W&G Grand Appeal. We have reached nearly £2000 already and plan to keep going for as long as possible and to keep raising more for this amazing cause.

Michael Boniface - Cambridge

Me and my two sisters, Kate and Laura, are running the Bath Half Marathon in memory of our dad who died 10 years ago from Epilepsy. We are running to honour our dad and help raise money for The Epilepsy Society.

Isabel Cochrane - Bath

I am running for my friend Ruth, who died recently of Behcets syndrome at the age of 18, a rare disease which affects a few people severely. I want to raise awareness of this terrible disease and hopefully raise money for the charity to help treat others and raise the charity's profile. This is her story, a video which she made before she died...

Theodore Roberts – Bath

I spent three months working in Romania with Cry in the Dark and the people I met there and the work they do has made me want to continue to support them. That summer was an amazing blessing to me and some of the people I met I now consider my friends, and this is my way of helping out my friends.

Deborah Hackett – Sherborne

Running for my cousin Michael and my friend Rich, who both sadly departed this world in their twenties due to undiagnosed cardiac problems.

Craig Guthrie – Melksham

I’m running for my dad who died the day after my wedding this year. I'm raising money for the RUH cancer unit in Bath.

Claire Rule – Plymouth

I am running on behalf of St Ann's Hospice, Little Hulton, Manchester. I am raising money for the hospice in memory of my mum and dad who both spent their last days there battling cancer, passing away in the same room ten years apart. They need over £14, 000 a day for the amazing staff and volunteers to provide life changing care and support to patients and families alike.

Daniel Ghadimi – Sutton Courtenay

I had a three stage colonectomy to remove my entire large intestine less than 12 months ago and now I'm raising money for cancer research.

Gemma Sawyer - Bath

In 2011 my dad fell very ill. We were told it was heart failure and thought of the worst.

We were told without a heart transplant he wouldn't survive the year. You hear stories about people waiting for donated organs for years and he didn't have that long to wait. Luckily a miracle happened and a heart was donated two days later. Without the fantastic staff, equipment, knowledge and experience at Papworth hospital, my dad wouldn't be here. I am running this to fundraise just to say a little thank you for giving my dad his life back.

Phil Halls – Trowbridge

I am running 5k every day in 2013 for Dorothy House Hospice and have so far done 286 days and raised £1227: www.justgiving.com/5keveryday.

Judy Mella - Wimborne

I visited a hospital in south Sudan that has no electricity or running water ( I am a surgeon). I was very humbled by a young man who had to crawl across the ward floor as he had lost his lower leg in a mine blast. I set up the local carpenter to make some crutches and it has continued from there. They use local resources and it costs just £15 a pair.

Jonathan Stevenson – Wotton-under-Edge

I am in training for the London Marathon where I am running for Heart UK.  This is a charity that focuses on the issues of high cholesterol.  I recently was told I had very high cholesterol, which was made worse due to a family history of heart disease.  I needed to change my lifestyle.  This is part of it.

Sarah Woolway - Paulton

On the 16th August 2013 my seventeen year old son was diagnosed with psychosis/manic episode. He is currently seriously ill in a adolescent mental health unit. The staff and doctors there are amazing. We are at the beginning of a very long journey for our son and family and at this time don't know what his recovery will be. I was going to run my 3rd Bath Half next year after taking a year off this year. I would like to raise awareness of mental illness in adolescents as there is still quite a stigma attached to mental health when approximately 80,000 children are diagnosed each year. I will be raising funds for the unit he is in at the moment as I feel all their amazing work needs to be recognised. It is also allowing me to keep focus during this difficult time by running as I find it’s a good time to think and process emotions therefore looking after my own mental wellbeing and helping me to remain strong both mentally and physically for my son during this very emotional period of time.

Alan O’Beirne – Bath

I have been applying for the New York marathon every year for the last 7 years. In 2010 I got in on the ballot but broke my leg 4 weeks before, and didn't go to NY. In 2012 I got in, went to NY, only for the marathon to be cancelled last minute because of hurricane Sandy. I've had seriously bad luck at full marathons and only ever want to do one - NY. It's a bit of a hard luck story!!!

Emma Abbey - Cheltenham

My best friend was diagnosed with a brain tumour in November 2012. She signed us both up for the Race for Life in Cheltenham in July 2013 and a few weeks before I thought I had better check I could actually run this! We walked the course as my friend was still having chemo (she had half her frontal lobe removed in November 2012), but having started running I moved on to Parkruns and am now hooked!

Charley and Sam Davies – Bradford on Avon

It’s a family run thing for us. My children and I run in memory of my husband who died eleven years ago of cancer in the RUH. Great man, sorely missed and my two boys and my daughter and I wish to do this for him and anyone else who have suffered losing a key family member. It’s a family challenge to keep all together and love each other through tough times and have some fun doing it as well.

Kirsty Saville - Worle

Myself and Charlotte Procter will be running the Bath Half marathon to raise money for a great cause; Cystic Fibrosis Comfort Fund. We have chosen Cystic Fibrosis Comfort Fund as it was the preferred charity of Hayley Dowdell. Hayley was 27 when she lost her battle with Cystic Fibrosis in November 2011. Throughout her adult life she played a big part in North Somerset in bringing about awareness of the illness. She took part in many fundraising activities including completing the Bristol 10K in 1h 47mins with only a 40% lung capacity, writing and illustrating a book to help young children understand CF and petitioning for and winning beds and equipment for ward 54 at the Bristol Royal Infirmary (BRI) Hospital.

Edward Fraser – Bath

Running for Liver Research. My mum had an urgent liver transplant on the 07.04.12. She was healthy and suddenly went into full liver failure. Organ Donation is top of our agenda.

Ali Wood - Westbury

My ten year old son had a heart transplant in November 2012 after becoming suddenly ill. I am raising money for Ronald McDonald house because they provided a home from home for us for 15 weeks while my son waited for a donor. I am also running for The British Heart Foundation. Running with me is a close friend who's daughter needed heart surgery straight after birth, she also used the Ronald McDonald House in Bristol.


Claire Belmont – Bradford on Avon

We have two ex-patients (traumatic brain injury) who want to do the half marathon to raise money for Frenchay Brain Injury Rehab Centre as a thank you for the care they received.  They want to raise money for the benefit of future patients.


Laura Hoskins - Trowbridge

We are doing this for my husband who passed away this year from a brain tumour. He was only 32. Me and a team of friends are in the process of setting up a charity in his name and every year we will do another charity event to raise money for cancer. Seen as this was a local event we choose this one and husband enjoyed doing this a few years ago.

Nick Sutton – Radstock

I am a sergeant in the British army and after completing my 22 yrs I am resettling in the Bath Area. 2nd March 2014 is my 40th birthday and my last day in the Army so it seemed to be a good day to do a half marathon.

Polly Williamson - Malmesbury

Polly was a European Event Rider.  She suffered a brain injury when she was thrown from her horse.  She received rehabilitation at Frenchay Brain Injury Centre and wants to raise money for future patients at the Centre.

John-Paul Kingdom – Bath

I suffer from Epilepsy and I have decided to do the run for the Epilepsy society. The 2014 BATHALF will be exactly a year since I had my last epilepsy episode.

Charlotte Fletcher and Sarah Cready - Bristol

Our housemate has recently been diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma very suddenly, and so we are running the Bath Half Marathon to raise money for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research. We are all second year students at the University of Bristol, and are aged between19-22.

David Knollman – Pymore

I am partaking in a charity trip to Ethiopia to build homes. The charity is called Habitat for Humanity. I have also set this goal as I am currently 22 Stone 10lbs and I am also training with my local boxing club (of which I am also Treasurer and training to be a coach).

Nel Wilton - Redruth

Running in memory of my husband Del, a Paramedic who committed suicide whilst suffering from PTSD.  He was an ardent supporter of Marie Curie Cancer Care and climbed Kilimanjaro in aid of MCCC in 2012.  I wouldn't dream of doing that, but I want to try this with a group of friends

Colin Bentley – Ottery St Mary

I volunteer for a Charity - HCPT the Pilgrimage Trust - and 2014 will be my group's 10th trip. I will be running ten events over ten months to raise money for ten children. From Frome to Rome is my challenge I start with the Frome half and end with the Rome Marathon in March 2014.

Vicky Sheppard - Frome

Raising money for brain tumour research, as my brother passed away from a brain tumour at the age of 26. I have now known three people to die from a brain tumour and I think it's important that this killer gets more press coverage so the charity can make more money which will go toward research. Brain tumours are the most common killer of children and adults under 40, but nobody seems to know that! We need to raise the profile of the charity. The half marathon is a special challenge for me as I have Type-1 diabetes.

Edward Driver – Bath

Having always wanting to get back to playing rugby, but working in the hospitality trade, I felt down and thought to myself what else could I challenge for. My brother-in-law and work colleagues have  all ran marathons, and I thought that would be the ultimate goal. Watching Run Fat Boy Run sealed the deal.

Marie Coupland (and Teresa Coupland) - Corston

I was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer on October 25th 2012. I had a very big operation on November 21st 2012 and finished chemotherapy in June this year.  I am running the London Marathon in 2014, and the Bath Half is preparation for this.

Raymond Blackwell – Bognor Regis

Took up running after recovering from prostate cancer eight years ago and I have since run three marathons and countless other races at various distances. At 75 I continue to enjoy my running. My grandson Joshua is at Bath University, so hoping for lots of support.

Jennie Bradbeer - Bristol

I ran the Bristol half five years ago and one year later I was diagnosed with Leukaemia. I want to run this race to return to fitness and as a person achievement after recovering from cancer.

Simon Wright-Cooper – South Marston

I am about to retire from the RAF after 31 years service.  The last half marathon I ran was in Kabul, Afghanistan in 2006.

Caroline Phillips - Redruth

I am running for the husband of my colleague Emma.  Martin Matthews was diagnosed with bowel cancer a couple of years ago which was successfully treated.  Unfortunately he was diagnosed with terminal secondary lung cancer last year and having been unsuccessful in getting treatment in the UK, he has been to Germany for pioneering surgery to remove the tumours from his lungs - costing £36000.  Emma and Martin have sold their house to pay for the treatment and the hope is that the treatment will considerably extend Martin's life, the Martin Appeal has been set up by colleagues to fund Martin's treatment.  He has also been supported by the Sunshine Appeal, so I would also like to support this charity.  Martin is 33 years old!

Philip Allen – Bristol

I started running marathons and half marathons after surviving a near fatal case of bacterial meningitis when I was 21 years old. I've just come back from Spain where I ran 10 half marathon distances in 13 days. I am chasing a sub 3 hour marathon time.

Rebecca Roper – Ross on Wye

My sister was diagnosed with Lupus at the age of fourteen, one of the youngest sufferers in the UK, and there is no known cure. Although she only suffers a mild form of the disease if not diagnosed or treated properly it can cause severe damage to organs and be life threatening. Lupus is not a very well known disease and many doctors are unaware of the symptoms, and this often leads to delays in diagnosis of up to seven years. Lupus UK is the only UK based Lupus charity to support sufferers and raise awareness of the disease.

Adam Hall – Twickenham

I am a PGA Professional golfer running for The Golf Trust, a charity that aims to introduce disabled and mentally ill people into sport and golf.  I almost lost my leg at university in a sporting injury and am originally from Bath

Charlotte Roberts - Cheltenham

I am running to raise money for a charity which relies entirely on fundraising donations. My mother died of Myeloma after battling with it for eleven years. During this time she raised hundreds of pounds for the charity through her sponsored walks, a battle in itself as Myeloma attacks the bones, amongst other things, making moving very painful at times. She inspired me my whole life, and still is today.

Gavin Alexander – Thonbury

My goldfish was always a fan of running and would swim to the side of the bowl nearest to the TV when the London Marathon was on. I'm running this for him, because he never had a chance to run properly himself - he couldn't find shoes that fit. And they always floated to the top of the tank too.

Gillian Johnson – Lower Wraxall

A lovely girl I used to teach died suddenly at the tender age of 13. The Air Ambulance rushed to save her but they were unable to do anything to help. I know from talking to my friend, the mother, that they tried so very hard and were saddened not to be able to bring her back. I now know that the Wiltshire Air Ambulance has to raise all its costs itself and since any one of us could need this fantastic service any time then I feel the least I can do is try and raise some money and run in memory of that wonderful girl who touched so many lives in a very positive way.

Christopher Barlow – Radstock

I plan to propose to my girlfriend when we complete the BATHALF.

Kate Boniface - Cambridge

I am running this for my father, who had epilepsy and died from a sudden unexpected epileptic attack. 2013 marks ten years since he passed away, and I will be running this with my sister. I want to give the money to the epilepsy research charity not only to raise awareness of how this condition affects the lives of children and adults, but also because it is the only charity which solely raises money to fund research into epilepsy. My father would have been very proud of me doing this as not only did he have epilepsy, but he was also a neurophysiologist, which means that researching epilepsy was something he would have been involved with on an intellectual as well as on a personal level.

Steve Owen – Chelmsford

My wife and I run a race a month, both in the UK and abroad to raise funds and awareness of the work done by MRSA Action UK.  I lost my father due to the infection during a routine operation.  We have raised over £2,000 in the last couple of years.

Jennifer Merritt - Purton

I was diagnosed with relapse and remitting Multiple Sclerosis in October 2011 after going numb from the waist down in May 2011, just before my wedding. Since then I have gone through remission and currently doing very well. I changed my diet, lifestyle and started running in February 2012 when 2k was a struggle. Bath half will be a warm up race before the London marathon 2014 where I am running for the MS Trust. It has been a life changing couple of years with the marathon being the ultimate achievement, and I have been able to turn my life around following the devastating news but not all people can. I hope to help the trust help them with information, support and more research into causes and cures.uk.virginmoneygiving.com/JenniferMerritt.

Matt Green – Derby

Diagnosed with Crohn's aged 16, I had an operation to remove six inches of small bowel. Now in full health, I want to raise some money for those who are still battling with the disease

Abigail Jones - Poole

I’m an endurance athlete at St Marys University, but I found out I have osteoporosis. I always wanted to do the London Marathon so I finally entered and got in through a charity place! I’m using Bath Half as part of my training and hoping to run PB.

Marcus Bryan – Chippenham

My closet friend died this year from cancer aged just 42. He was a keen runner and has left behind a wife and four year old son. I want to run in his memory and raise money for a cancer related charity. He would laugh at the idea of me running if he was alive and it will inspire me to train this year and keep our thoughts with him.

Vyv Salisbury - Bristol

My daughter and her partner had very premature twins in August. Sadly one of the little boys died after four days, but the other little twin is doing well and hopefully will be home for Christmas. Ever since the twins were born, the whole family have received incredible care and support from the special care baby unit at St Michael's hospital, Bristol and the Cots for Tots house there. I really want to raise as much money as possible these brilliant people. I also broke my leg quite badly in a skiing accident in January, and I have never run a half-marathon before - so I think this is going to be a great challenge.

Matthew Carter – Bristol

The entry was a wedding present for me and my new brother-in-law Darren Weston, who married my sister in May 2013 and will be running with me.

Juliet Harris - Melksham

I will be running for our nominated charity Wherever The Need.  I the Brand Manager for Ripples Bathrooms and we want to raise £22,000 for WTN, so far we have raised £12,000. The money raised will provide clean drinking water and Eco toilets for a village in India.  I was lucky enough to visit the village two years ago to meet the people and see how the project is progressing.

Christopher Lewis – Bath

I ate some broccoli yesterday and it was good.

Michael Long – London

I am running a half marathon in every city that has hosted the summer Olympics. Of course Bath is not one but it's a great city to keep up my fitness!

Robert Clifford – Bath

I am the CEO of Ethiopiaid; a charity working with trusted partners in Ethiopia who provide welfare and development services for local people. In September 2013 we relocate our UK office from London to Bath and in 2014 we celebrate our 25th year - with 25 runners taking part in the Bath Half.

Isaac Shaw – Chippenham

I sustained a serious head injury after been assaulted in Chippenham. I was in a coma and had two operations in the space of a year. I now have a titanium plate in my head. The Gazette and Herald followed my story closely. I will be running on behalf of headways.

Adam  Shellard – Bristol

I have had three heart operations, and have a rare heart condition called Brugada. I'm doing it to prove anyone can do anything you want to.

Craig Witherick – Oxford

Three years ago I sadly lost my Godson to meningitis. So I thought it would be a great idea to raise some money for the charity that has helped me and my family/friends through a terrible ordeal.

Kevin Smith – Shepton Mallet

I started running to lose a little bit of weight at the age of 44.  My wife, who is a little younger than myself, started training with me for her 1st half marathon in 2011 to raise money for Cots for Tots after the loss of our baby son at five days old in St Michaels Hospital.  We only got to the point of a full term pregnancy after 5 IVF attempts which included 3 failed attempts and one miscarriage at 12 weeks on Christmas Day.  This is a sad story I know but we would be happy for it to be used if it raised the profile of Cots for Tots or for the SANDS organisation who offer support to bereft parents of babies.

Ian Hicks – Trowbridge

I'm a barefoot runner, need I say more!

James Franklin – Cwmbran

I am running this half marathon for a close friend and family. They have two young boys Ethan and Josh. They are both type 1 diabetics, and Ethan also has Duchenne Muscular Dystophy.

Ben O’Sullivan – Cheltenham

I was training for the Royal Parks Half Marathon, in aid of The Songwriting Charity, and had clocked up 80 miles. On Saturday 14 Sept 2013 I was completed my first ever 10 mile run. In the evening I danced at a wedding and tore the meniscus in my left knee, so I need to go into recovery mode and having had sponsorship for that race, I need an alternative. And the Bath Half is perfect!

Barry Newman – Gloucester

I started running again after almost thirty years away from the sport and have been raising money for Sue Ryder following the death of both my parents Ron & Iris Newman, who were cared for at Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice. The staff at the Hospice are fantastic people, the care is second to none and the support for families is just outstanding. This is my way of giving something back as a way of saying thank you to my family during two very difficult times.

Toni Audis – Chippenham

Lee, my son, is a brain injury patient who has made a good recovery and wants to raise money for equipment for future brain injury patients at the Centre. We are running together.

Ross Studzinski – Bristol

Running for my parents who have both most recently conquered cancer.

John Mackay – Whitley Bay

Following the sad news that a friend of ours was diagnosed with Hodgkin's Lymphoma, my wife (Sam Mackay) and I decided to challenge ourselves throughout 2014 in a show of our support and to raise as much money as possible for charity. We have enlisted a group of friends to join us as we take on an event each month throughout the year ranging from long endurance walks, distance swims, triathlons, mountain climbs and of course, the Bath Half!

Stephen Higgins – Earl’s Court

I will run the course barefoot.


*Editors not: we intended to pick out just a few of the best of these stories, but felt quite inspired by all of them - we hope you do too!

For more information check out the race website www.bathhalf.co.uk


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