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Thousands raised by Frome’s London Marathon runners

ALMOST £12,000 has been raised from runners from Frome who completed The London Marathon at the weekend. They were among 36,000 runners who took to the streets of London to complete the gruelling 26.2 mile course.

Amongst the Frome runners were: Andy Eyers and Paul Durston who raised £5,000 for Dorothy House; Julie Peet who raised over £600 for Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) and Frome Town Youth Football Club; James Arnall-Culliford running for UK domestic violence charity Refuge; Kate Wareham who raised £1,000 for Frome based charity Positive Action on Cancer (PAC); Becky Webb who was running her first marathon with the aim of raising £2,000 for Cancer Research UK and Georgie Starkie, who was the 38th woman runner home in a personal best time.

On an emotional day so soon after the Boston Marathon bombings, we asked the runners about their experiences of the day. 

Andy Eyers completed the marathon with his friend Paul Durston raising £5,000 for Dorothy House in the process.

He said, “We don’t have the final total yet but already we’re at £5,000 between myself and Paul. It’s great as we were only expected to raise £2,000 each for Dorothy House. It was great that we could run in memory of my brother and raise money at the same time.”

The pair stayed together throughout the race and both crossed the finishing line in 4 hours 25 minutes. Andy said, “We’re actually disappointed with our time as we hoped to do it in around 3 hours 30 minutes but unfortunately Paul picked up a groin strain at around the half way point, but I think we did really well to finish”.

This was both Andy and Paul’s first full marathon. Andy added “I have done the Bath Half Marathon which is great but this was a massive event in comparison, the crowd was amazing all the way around the course and this really helped us get to the finishing line.”

Andy also noted the tributes paid to those affected by the Boston bombings last week. He said, “It was amazing, before the race everybody paid their respects by observing the 30 second silence, wearing black ribbons and some were even draped in American flags.”

The next event the pair will compete in is in July when they will run the Frome Half Marathon.

JULIE PEET exceeded her expectations as she raised over £600 for charities Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY) and Frome Town Youth Football Club.

Although she got a place in the marathon through the ballot she still chose to raise money for charity. She said, “I was fortunate to get a place on the ballot having applied the last five years and not got a place. this meant there was no pressure to raise a certain amount for charity but I felt that it was an opportunity to help. CRY have been incredible throughout and even arranged transport for me back to my hotel and a massage after the race, which was very much needed!”

Julie completed the race in 4 hours and 28 minutes “ I was really pleased with that time, after all the training I did its nice that it paid off and I completed it the race under my target time.

“The atmosphere was incredible. There was an emotional feel before the race as everyone wore black ribbons as a mark of respect for the Boston bombings last week. The whole experience is something I will never forget”.

JAMES Arnall-Culliford received sponsorship from all over the world as he completed the marathon to raise money for UK domestic violence charity Refuge.

James said, “The support has been incredible, I have had donations from all over the world from places as far away as the USA, it shows how much this charity means to people. I raised £3,200 which exceeded my target so i’m really pleased.”

Another factor motivating James was the challenge to beat his brothers time from last years London Marathon which he did, finishing in 3 hours and 20 minutes. He said, “ The sibling rivalry is massive, to beat his time last year of 4 hours and 15 minutes is massive for me.

“It was such an incredible feeling during the race. The noise from the crowd made me feel amazing, I imagine it’s as close to feeling like a premier league footballer that I will get.”

James also spoke fondly of the atmosphere prior to the race as runners paid their respects to those affected by events in Boston last week “On arrival there was a buzz with the anticipation of the race but as soon as officials blew a whistle to mark the beginning of the silence it was eerie, everyone observed the silence impeccably and there was a real feeling of being part of a big marathon running family.”

KATE Wareham completed her first marathon and raised over £1,000 for Frome based charity Positive Action on Cancer (PAC).

She has been running for four years and is part of the Frome Running Club. However, this was her first marathon and she finished in 4 hours and 32 minutes. She said “ I’m really pleased. I hoped to complete it in five hours so i’m delighted. My training plan worked wonders and the support I received from the running club and from the people of Frome has been incredible.

“I’m not normally good at raising money for charity and I only hoped to raise about £200 so to get over £1,000 is amazing, everyone has been so supportive”

She also recalls the special atmosphere in the wake of events in Boston last week “It was emotional, there was a real sense people were running for those unfortunate enough to be involved in last weeks bombings. Many people were in tears and those around me held hands as everyone paid their respects”.

Kate is already planning her next race and is competing in the Gosport half marathon in November. 

GEORGIEStarkie ran the marathon in 2.57.38, a time which made her the 38th lady in the race out of the tens of thousands who took part. It was also a new personal best for Georgie, who had already broken the 3 hour mark in Frankfurt in October.

Georgie said, “I’m obviously very pleased with that!

“I thought there might be fewer spectators on the course this year after Boston but I think this year was the best supported (this is the third year in a row I’ve run London). The silence at the start was very powerful. It really was silent (amazing with over 35,000 people!) and a lovely celebration of the human spirit.

“My next race will be the Chicago Marathon in October where I will be running on the Elite Development Start. I’ll be hoping to run faster there!”

Georgie Starkie ran her ninth marathon on Sunday, which was also the third time she has run the London Marathon. Other marathons under her belt include Edinburgh, Abingdon, Amsterdam, and New York. Her last three races had all been championship qualifying times, which gave her a starting place at the front of the field.

Georgie has been supporting Kate Wareham raise money for PAC

BECKY Webb was running her first marathon with the aim of raising £2,000 for Cancer Research UK.
Although she had been entered for last year’s marathon she had to defer her entry due to injury. Becky, who is a PE teacher, finished in 4 hours, 22 minutes, and 29 seconds. She said “It was worth the two year wait and I was carried around on a tide of enthusiasm from an amazing crowd.  To anyone thinking of doing it I would say get involved! I’ll see you there next year despite the aches and pains after.

“I chose to run for Cancer Research UK as my Grandad died from lung cancer last year, and my best friend is a Cancer Research UK nurse so I know how valuable their work is to so many people.

“My just giving address is: or people can text ‘BECW £1/2/5/10’ to 70070. I am aiming for £2000 and am running school events after the marathon which will contribute.”

Becky has previously cycled from Land’s End to John O’Groats in July 2012 with eight school pupils from St Edmund’s Girls’ School Salisbury, which was also in aid of Cancer Research and raised £5,708.