London Marathon 2019: Uttlesford runners take on mammoth challenge for good causes

PUBLISHED: 09:14 12 April 2019

Sean Norris, Paul Warren with wife Susan Warren and Andy Elms. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

Sean Norris, Paul Warren with wife Susan Warren and Andy Elms. Picture: CONTRIBUTED

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Runners living and working in the Dunmow area will be among those taking part in the London Marathon on April 28.

With just over two weeks to go, the Dunmow Broadcast spoke to participants who have been pounding the pavements about why they decided to sign up for the challenge.

Paul Warren, 56, from Thaxted, is running for St Clare Hospice in memory of his wife Susan, a mother and keen horse rider who died in September last year, aged 64.

Susan, who had lung cancer, received care at the hospice and now Paul wants to "give something back".

Susan was 'a wonderful woman', Paul says. "We were together for 25 years. We travelled the world a lot and we were living abroad for 10 years. Wherever we went Sue was up for the challenge and ready to move into a new place, set it up and dealt with everything.

"She was a committed and talented horse woman. We always had horses wherever we lived and eventually when we returned to the UK from the Middle East we bought a horse back with us which I have still got."

Describing the care Susan received at the hospice, Paul, an aircraft engineer, said: "They just have so much time for the patients, they treat them so well, they make sure they have everything they need. They did everything they can to make her last days as good as they could be."

This will be Paul's first marathon although he regularly runs half marathons. He has already reached his goal of raising £3,000 but is now hoping to raise £4,000 for the hospice.

Father-of-two Andy Elms,38, is running in memory of his younger brother Tim, who grew up in Dunmow and died last year, aged 33. Andy's family were also heavily involved in setting up a charity which aimed to provide respite care in Uttlesford.

Tim was diagnosed with hydrocephalus and later severe epilepsy, and Andy is raising money for the Colchester and Ipswich Hospitals Charity's Critical Care Unit Fund and the Maypole House Charitable Fund.

Andy said: "Tim was a truly special and unique person, with an infectious personality.

"He faced many challenges over his lifetime and had to cope with all the complications his conditions brought.

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"He loved people and people loved him. Tim had that rarest of qualities that people would meet him just the once and they would remember him and for all the right reasons."

The Maypole House Charitable Fund helps provide respite services for children and adults with disabilities and their families and carers.

Andy said: "The critical care unit at Colchester Hospital is where Tim spent his last few weeks. The care he received there really was exceptional."

Despite completing two half marathons before, the thought of the London Marathon is still "daunting" to Andy.

"I am determined to do it and when I cross that finish line, all the early morning training runs and pain will have been so worth it," he said.

Sean Norris, who works in Stansted Mountfitchet, will be running the marathon to raise funds for Accuro Care Services, a west Essex charity which supports people with disabilities.

Sean first learned about Accuro whilst overseeing some work at their Takeley office.

Sean ran a half marathon last year and his training regime includes six evening runs a week. He is also following a very strict diet.

Sean said: "I've basically cut out everything bad. There's no alcohol, no chocolate, crisps or fast food. I'm really taking it seriously."

Tiwa Odukoya, community fundraising officer at Accuro said: "Sean's passion and dedication is really inspiring for us. Through Sean's hard work, we can continue to provide our services to more people with disabilities so that they too can make long lasting friendships and develop themselves in a safe and welcoming atmosphere."

To sponsor Paul, search for Paul Warren on Virgin Money Giving.

To sponsor Andy, visit: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/running4Tim.

To sponsor Sean visit: uk.virginmoneygiving.com/accuro-sean-london2019.

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