A company director raised £2,200 for Saffron Walden Almshouses by running the London Marathon.

John Stirling is a director at Walden Capital, a chartered financial planning firm founded in 2013.

Walden Capital's chosen charity of the year is Saffron Walden Almshouses, which offer homes for people from the town and surrounding area who are on a low income.

John said: "Last year an office colleague wanted to enter the 2024 London Marathon, and asked - indeed cajoled me - into joining them.

"It’s an event I have applied for before, although not in the last decade (or two possibly).  So, they were pushing at something of an open door - it’s a bit of an 'unscratched itch' on my part.

"I entered, and ticked the box to contribute my entry fee to charity should I not get in on the main ballot.

"Low and behold, I didn’t get selected, but did achieve a place in the reserve ballot for those who don’t get in on the main ballot and donate. 

"Before I knew it, I got a place. After a month or two of complete denial at the thought of running 26.2 miles in front of literally millions of people, I started training. 

"I was delighted to finish, even if it did take just over five hours and 42 minutes."

Saffron Walden Almshouses manages 47 unfurnished dwellings in Abbey Lane, Prime's Close and Freshwell Street.

Applicants must be on a low income, with limited savings, and resident in the former borough of Saffron Walden or its immediately adjacent villages, or with clearly demonstrable strong connections to the area.

More information is available at https://www.swalmshouses.org/.


Gary Hyams, chair of Saffron Walden Almshouses, said: "We were delighted when Walden Capital made us their charity of the year, but learning about John's decision to nominate us for his marathon fundraising effort was a truly welcome surprise. 

"And to hear that he has raised £2,200 for the almshouses comes as great news.

"We are very grateful to John and hope that it doesn't take him too long to recover from pounding London's streets."