Framlingham businessman Bill Bulstrode will be among the thousands on the course of the London Marathon this year as he aims to raise £3,000 for the Alzheimer’s Society.

The Framlingham personality, who has been a business man in the town for 45 years, told the EADT that he had always wanted to take part in the event, this year taking place on April 24, and has already begun a strict training regime.

For the past 18 months, the 62-year-old has been going to the gym five times a week, and now heads out for lengthy training runs at the weekend. Last week he completed a 10-mile run in 1:45, knocking 10 minutes off his time from the previous weekend.

“I have obviously got to step it up as I get nearer,” he said. “Sunday morning I should be out again.”

Mr Bulstrode entered into the marathon’s ballot, but knew the chances of him being accepted weren’t guaranteed.

“I just have this thing about the London Marathon,” he said. “I always watch it and it absolutely amazes me what an amazing, marvellous event it is. I have watched it from day one and always said I would love to do it. It’s on my bucket list.”

He chose to support the Alzheimers Society in memory of his late father-in-law Maurice Cobb, who died four years ago after a battle with dementia.

“I know exactly what people go through with it,” he said.

He added that while he wanted to make sure he crossed the finish line, he wasn’t obsessing about his final time.

“It’s not a race,” he said. “I want to get to the finish and in a reasonable time. I have got to keep my fitness, I don’t want to get any injuries.

“I just can’t wait for it to come.

“I would like to raise at least £3,000, that’s what I have set my mind on.

I’m pushing hard, emailing a lot of people, even if they give £10, £5, £’s such a good cause and such a marvellous event because it raises absolutely thousands [of pounds].”

Mr Bulstrode first set up shop in Framlingham as a wine, spirit and grocery merchant in the 1970s before learning the trade of carpet fitting. Bulstrodes opened in Bridge Street 15 years ago having previously run in Church Street. He also runs a carpet and flooring fitting business.

More than £645 has already been donated to the cause online, with further donations being made in a bucket in-store at Bulstrodes.

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