Dad runs 31 marathons in 31 days to raise £225k for kids with brain tumours
- Credit: Ben Blowes
A Guinness World Record holder from Suffolk, who once completed the London Marathon with a tumble dryer on his back, has raised more than £225,000 to help care for hundreds of children with brain tumours.
Ben Blowes, a renowned runner from the village of Gazeley, took on his "most daunting challenge yet" as he ran 31 marathons in 31 days in December 2020 as part of the Tom's Trust 31 Stars campaign.
Each day Mr Blowes ran for a different child of which Tom's Trust supports, and his extraordinary challenge took him through some iconic routes around Suffolk, Cambridge and Milton Keynes.
The fundraising element of the campaign has now come to a close, with a final total off £225,000 being raised. Initially the target of £31,000 was set.
The money raised will go towards the vital provision of psychological and mental health care for children with brain tumours.
The campaign is now able to provide support for 225 children with brain tumours and up to 675 family members for the next year - more than seven times the number of families it was set out to help.
Mr Blowes, 49, said: “I am so proud to support Tom’s Trust’s children and thrilled to see how much has been raised.
“After meeting Debs a few years ago and hearing her talk about her son Tom and the changes that she wanted to make in his name, I knew that I had to do something to help.
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"Every painful step I took in December will help to support a child and their family and as a father myself, it was important to me to try to help as best I could.
“It was a daunting challenge, which I wouldn’t have been able to attempt without the support of my family and the fantastic team behind the campaign.”
As a Pride of Britain nominee, Mr Blowes has faced many running and fitness challenges in his time and despite becoming injured early on in the challenge he completed one race on crutches.
Even whilst completing the 31 marathons Mr Blowes continued his full-time job, and he was able to cross the finish line in Newmarket with his two sons Spencer and Joel.
Debs Whiteley, co-founder of Tom’s Trust, said: “I was absolutely blown away by the support that Ben’s epic challenge received and so grateful for the support that he showed to us.
“It was wonderful to be able to champion the children that we support and really allow people to understand what real-life heroes these families are through their stories."