[A] dad of four is hoping to clock up over 100 miles in 24-hours in a bid to raise £2,000 for Tynedale Hospice at Home, a charity based in Northumberland.
Matt Cawood, 46, works for Brampton-based company WCF, a specialist retailer and distributer, as a business development manager. He will be running a 7 ½ mile loop over a 24-hour period in the gruelling challenge which starts at midday on 18 August in Keswick.
He is running in the memory of his Dad, John, who died of a sarcoma in 2015.
Matt, who lives in Northumberland, said: “When my Dad retired he moved to the Lake District and I have many happy memories of visiting him there which is why I chose to do the challenge there. He received excellent care from Macmillan nurses in his final days which made such a difference and he was able to die at home, surrounded by his family. This meant a lot to him so I know, first hand, what a difference being nursed at home made to him and to all of us.
“I was keen to take on a challenge in his memory to support a local charity near where I live and Tynedale Hospice at Home was the obvious choice. The nursing care they provide is second to none and if my Dad had lived locally to me I know we would have called upon its valuable services.”
Matt is being joined in the challenge by his younger brother James, 35, who lives in Reading. James aims to raise £2,000 for Sarcoma UK, and they hope friends and family will join them in the challenge, doing the odd mile here and there to keep them company.
The pair will start in Keswick, run out of Portinscale and up to the Newlands Valley, their Dad’s favourite valley, and then head back to Keswick town centre in a figure of eight loop.
Matt and James have called their challenge ‘24 hours with Dad.’
Matt continued: “We named the challenge ‘24 hours with Dad’ as it’s taking place in a county he loved and it will be an opportunity to focus on him and his memory as we clock up the laps.”
Matt, who is no stranger to ultra-marathon running, and runs in excess of 50 miles a week, is still nervous about the challenge ahead.
“Running the same loop over a 24-hour period requires a different type of stamina to marathon running. In a marathon, every mile you clock up is a mile closer to the finish line, but running a continuous loop means you’re never any closer to the end. It’s definitely a case of training your mind to keep focussed and motivated.
“One thing’s for certain though, knowing that I’ll be raising money for Tynedale Hospice at Home is all the motivation I’ll need but I’ll make sure I plan an interesting play list for my Ipod and have a nice glass of red wine waiting for me once the challenge is over.”
All the funds Matt raises will support the work of Tynedale Hospice at Home which provides palliative nursing care to people in their own homes, Family Support Services and a Hospital Transport Service to people living in Tynedale, West Northumberland, Ponteland and the surrounding areas.
Cathy Bates, community fundraiser, Tynedale Hospice at Home, said: “We wish Matt and James all the very best in this incredible challenge. I feel exhausted just thinking about it! We rely on the generosity and creativity of people like them to help raise 90% of the funds we need to run our vital services. I never fail to be amazed and in awe of some of the amazing ideas people have to fundraise for us, and this challenge is no exception.”
To support Matt in his fundraising efforts you can sponsor him at www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Matt-Cawood24hrswithdad