Crowds gathered at South Kesteven Sports Stadium on Monday to cheer on a Grantham schoolboy as he ran his final mile for charity.
Instead of spending his school holidays relaxing or playing with friends, eight-year-old Finn, of Huntingtower Road, Grantham, made it his mission to run one mile a day for 26 days to raise money for Cancer Research.
His challenge was in memory of Grantham man Mark ‘Tilf’ Tilford, who lost his battle with a brain tumour in June last year, as Finn ‘would rather people just didn’t get poorly’.
Since breaking up from school last month, Finn has been pounding the pavements in all weather conditions, ending up at the stadium on Monday night.
He completed his final mile in just seven minutes and 54 seconds to the roar of applause from over 50 people who had turned up to support him, including Tilf’s parents, sister, brother-in-law and niece.
Finn’s schoolteacher, at Huntingtower Community Primary Academy, was also in the crowd cheering him on.
Finn’s mum, Michelle Ablitt, said: “Everyone has been so supportive, from his teachers, to our family and friends, and even a message of support from ‘Ben 401’, a runner who completed 401 marathons in 401 days.”
Michelle invited a representative from Cancer Research to collect £1,378 on Monday. Ian Charles, of Signs Express in London Road, had donated a large cardboard cheque, so Finn could present it properly and see what his hard work had amounted to.
Michelle added: “His original target was £100, so we have all been overwhelmed by the amount of support that he has received. Everyone has really got behind him.”
Since presenting the cheque Finn has raised a further £360.
After running 26 miles in under a month, Finn is now enjoying a well deserved rest before he returns to school in September.
He said: “I enjoyed running with my friends and family. I am pleased that it is over but proud of myself for doing it.”
Michelle added: “We are incredibly proud of him.”
There is still time to boost Finn’s fund-raising even further by visiting www.just giving.com/fundraising/michelle-ablitt