Welwyn Hatfield Runners in Flora London Marathon

CHARITIES in Times Territory will have received a welcome boost yesterday thanks to the kind-hearted souls who ran this year s Flora London Marathon. It was a record-breaking year for The Isabel Hospice, in Bridge Road East, WGC, which had an unprecedente

CHARITIES in Times Territory will have received a welcome boost yesterday thanks to the kind-hearted souls who ran this year's Flora London Marathon.

It was a record-breaking year for The Isabel Hospice, in Bridge Road East, WGC, which had an unprecedented 18 people running on its behalf, raising an estimated �30,000 in the process.

One of those runners was 72-year-old Dennis Draper, who was running in his 19th London Marathon - and his 157th marathon to date.

Mr Draper, of Longcroft Lane, WGC, completed the course in an impressive four hours and 36 minutes - raising around �900.


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He said: "I just tried to keep a steady pace, and I was pleased with my time.

"I've run marathons all over the world, but London is always a bit special."

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A further 28 people ran on Sunday in aid of the Ron Pickering Memorial Fund, a charity set up in memory of the late sports commentator by his widow, Jean.

Mrs Pickering, who lives in Welwyn, said the London Marathon had been vital to the success of the charity.

"It's kept the fund going for the past 18 years, it's been our mainstay," she said.

"We give every penny raised to our athletes, and we usually raise between �30,000 to �40,000.

"We seem to be on target for that again this year.

"It was a great day and I am so grateful for those that took part. It makes me feel quite humble."

Another runner was 22-year old Jade Bracey, who was running to raise money for the Children's Trust, the charity that helped her recover from a serious car accident in 2001.

"It was amazing, fantastic, I can't believe that I did it," said Jade, from Hitherway, WGC.

"The crowd were amazing; I lost count of how many people cheered me on. I felt very lucky to be running the marathon. I'm just lost for words.

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