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‘The Last Gasp’ fundraisers help to raise £7,500 for the West Suffolk Hospital charity

PUBLISHED: 09:41 24 January 2018 | UPDATED: 10:29 24 January 2018

Pictured at the West Suffolk Hospital with the equipment they have helped to purchase are, left to right, Jo and Mike Wells, Macmillan unit manager Fran Davidson, and Martin and Tracey Hayes.

Pictured at the West Suffolk Hospital with the equipment they have helped to purchase are, left to right, Jo and Mike Wells, Macmillan unit manager Fran Davidson, and Martin and Tracey Hayes.

Archant

Two runners have helped to raise a total of £7,500 for charity after their epic marathon between Burwell and Cambridge.

Martin Hayes and Mike Wright had originally bid for places in the London Marathon but failed to get a slot.

So the pair, who were the first to admit that running is not their forte, decided to create their own bespoke route of 26 miles 385 yards … and The Last Gasp was born.

They completed the course from their homes in Burwell, setting off from Mandeville Hall, to Parker’s Piece, in Cambridge, and back.

And now the money they raised has gone to the My WiSH Charity, which supports the West Suffolk Hospital, in Bury St Edmunds.

It has been used to purchase equipment for Ward G1 and the Macmillan Unit where Mike’s 54-year-old wife Tracey was treated for non hodgkins lymphoma.

That includes £3,000 for a pump which allows more than one intravenous fluid to run through at a time which is important during chemotherapy; £3,000 for a Raizer, a special chair which lifts patients if they fall; and the rest of the money has been directed to a Chester chest, a lifelike model of a human torso with detachable right arm designed for the insertion, care and removal of common long-term vascular access routes.

Mike, 58, an agronomist, completed the course in just under five hours, but Martin, 55, an HGV driver who had been plagued with injuries took around nine hours, walking most of the route.

They were supported on the run by fellow Burwellian Mick Smith who cycled along the route with them.

The idea for the run for the fundraising duo came from Martin in a bid to thank the hospital for the treatment given to his wife. He linked up with Mike, whose wife Jo was a great support to Tracey when she was ill.

And they set it for an appropriate time of the year ... April 1.

Tracey said: “The staff are just phenomenal and they are so supportive. They have a passion for caring for people and they know what to say at the right time.

“I cannot speak highly enough of them.”

And she praised the people who contributed with donations saying: “Everyone has been so generous and it has just been so incredible with the amount of money that has been raised.”

A man arrested after reportedly being armed with a gun and allegedly holding a young woman against her will at a house in Ipswich this morning has been released under investigation, pending further enquiries, police have said.

Police searching for missing Kesgrave man Paul Moore, who has not been seen for almost three weeks, have made an arrest.

Three people are due to appear in court on Monday after an elderly woman had her handbag stolen in Felixstowe town centre on Saturday afternoon.

With temperatures due to plunge and three days of snow warnings, calls are being made for neighbours to look out for the more vulnerable people in their communities.

Widespread snow has been forecast for Suffolk and Essex next week, starting on Monday morning. Find out here if your local school in Suffolk or Essex has been forced to close fully or partially on Monday.

Meet Ally – a devoted guide dog who is being forced to retire early after she was attacked six times in Suffolk.

Emergency services were called to a two-vehicle crash at a busy junction in Ipswich on Sunday night.

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