Grantham runners have praised the carnival-like atmosphere after finishing this year’s London Marathon.
The London event was David Smith’s first marathon. David, 39, of Langford Gardens, Grantham, has raised over £1,000 for the Dyslexia Research Trust after finishing the marathon in 4 hours and 8 minutes.
His wife Elizabeth said David was really ‘chuffed’ that he managed to get a place through the ballot and will be trying again next year. He has run a number of half marathons and 10K races and runs 35 miles per week.
Grantham businessman Alastair Hawken, who owns Panini in Westgate and Grantham Gingerbread, was running his first marathon and raising money for Marie Curie Cancer Care in memory of his mother. He has raised just under £2,500.
Alastair said: “It was the hardest thing I have ever done in my life! I did months of training in sub-zero temperatures and then it was 14 degrees on the day with no cover from the sun. It was hostile!
“But I wanted it to be a challenge because so many people had supported me. I remember running aound the 20-mile mark and thinking I am never doing this again! I am really pleased. It was a cracking day. It was a 26-mile carnival.”
Penny Hedley Lewis, of Corby Glen, ran her eighth London Marathon in aid of the British Red Cross. She is President of the Lincolnshire branch and hopes to raise more than £2,000. She ran a time of four hours, 10 minutes and four seconds, slightly slower than her best time recorded last year.
Penny, 64, said: “The crowds were absolutely amazing. There were so many people making so much noise.”
She said she hoped to be running her ninth London Marathon next year.
Terry Yates, 35, of Winchester Road, Grantham, has raised about £500 for his chosen charity, Children with Cancer. He ran a time of 5:50:19. Terry said: “The time doesn’t matter to me. I was reggae dancing 12 miles into to it! I love it. The atmosphere was amazing. You ache like never before afterwards, but that really doesn’t matter.”
Chairman of Grantham Business Club Stuart Pigram ran his third London Marathon in a time of 4:53. He has raised £2,000 for his chosen charities, The National Blind Children’s Society and Rainbows Hospice for children.
Stuart said: “I think this was the best supported London Marathon I have ever done. It’s a privilege to do it and to do it for such charities.”
He said he will do the marathon again and is so inspired that he would like to go on and do triathlons as well.
Abi Schofield, 22, has raised more than £1,220 for the NSPCC and hopes to reach £2,000. Abi is working at the Stepping Stones Nursery in Grantham where she has had the support of staff and children.
She said: “It was really, really hard. But it was an absolutely amazing day. It was the best experience I have ever had. I cannot explain the pain you go through! I would like to say a big thank you to the Stepping Stones nursery staff.”
Julie Spencer, 42, a personal trainer with UK Hair Holistics in Grantham, ran the marathon for the first time and raised £2,125 in aid of REFUGE for women and children against domestic violence. She ran a time of three hours, 54 minutes.
Julie said: “The atmosphere was amazing. After 21 miles it did hurt and it was hard. But the crowd spurred us on.”