Runners urged to take part in Success After Stroke fundraiser

Louise St John Howe, Nikki Burke and Dominik Burke all gearing up for the race at the Auberies on Ju

Louise St John Howe, Nikki Burke and Dominik Burke all gearing up for the race at the Auberies on July 12 in aid of Success After Stroke - Credit: Gregg Brown

A Suffolk charity is appealing to energetic fundraisers to don their trainers and take part in a run through landscape that was made famous by Thomas Gainsborough.

Success After Stroke, based in Sudbury, provides a twice weekly support group where dedicated volunteers and therapists help stroke survivors to regain their independence and confidence.

Held at the Stevenson Centre in Great Cornard on Tuesdays and Fridays, group members can get involved with everything from mathematics and art therapy to Nordic walking, all aimed at helping with their rehabilitation.

However, the group is entirely self-funded and it costs £45,000 per year to run.

According to Louise St. John Howe, a trustee of the charity, this means they are always looking for new ways to raise money.

Last year, they organised an art exhibition in St Peter’s Church where celebrity broadcaster and journalist Andrew Marr – who suffered a stroke in January 2013 at the age of 53 – donated a painting to be auctioned.

They also held their first Success After Stroke 10km charity run across Auberies Estate Farm in Bulmer Tye, which featured in one of Gainsborough’s most famous works, Mr and Mrs Andrews.

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Ms St. John Howe said they were hoping to attract more runners to the event this year, which will take place on July 12 and will also feature a 5km race.

She said: “Success After Stoke has been going for 13 years now and it enables stroke survivors who perhaps live on their own to come out and do things that will help with their rehabilitation. We have more than 50 members to whom this service is invaluable.

“However, the charity doesn’t receive any Government funding and is not run in conjunction with any other national organisation, so we have to raise all of our own funds. Apart from the occupational therapists and an administrator, the charity is run entirely by a team of around 20 volunteers.

“We would really urge people to support the group by signing up for the run on July 12, which is suitable for runners of all abilities from experienced athletes to beginners. It’s also an ideal opportunity to run across some breathtaking terrain.”

Members of Success After Stroke are actively involved on the day, with those that are able taking on a one mile walk along a path with specially erected railings.

Entry to the main race is £13.50 for members of running clubs and £15 for others. Those who raise £50 in sponsorship for Success After Stroke will receive a refund on their entry fee.

Race management service Nice Work is organising the event. For an entry form and more details, visit and follow the links.

There will be medals and finish line goodies on offer to all runners, plus prizes and awards for the leading athletes.

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