Get in touch: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting YORK to 80360 or send an email»
Eight-day fundraising challenge to mark legacy of Jane Tomlinson
THE legacy of heroine Jane Tomlinson is to be marked with an epic fundraising challenge – ten years after she completed her first marathon while battling cancer.
Widower Mike Tomlinson and their daughter Rebecca – a student in York – are set to take on an exhausting eight-day challenge which will see them run the 26-mile Paris marathon then cycle for six days to London, via the Jane’s Appeal home turf of Yorkshire, before completing the London Marathon.
The pair will be joined by two mystery celebrities – set to be revealed later this week – and other supporters of Jane’s Appeal, which has raised £4 million to date, along the route.
The challenge will see the team cycle 100 miles a day as well as the two 26-mile marathons.
Mike, who has been at the forefront of continuing the Appeal’s fundraising efforts following Jane’s death in 2007 – including setting up a landmark 10k event in York – said he wanted to something “outstanding” to remember his late wife and mark the ten years since she ran the London Marathon for the first time.
She was the first terminally-ill breast cancer patient to ever complete the London Marathon.
Mike said: “We thought of the London Marathon –as it was her first big fundraising event. But we did not want to do something too easy. We wanted to do something really special.”
Mike, who said he had yet to begin training for the event, said the cycle route would incorporate York and other Yorkshire cities including Leeds and Hull, and has encouraged supporters to join the team along the way. The team hope Jane’s Appeal will reach a fundraising milestone of £5 million by April next year.
Mike said: “I still struggle to comprehend the endurance feats Jane completed and the starting point was the 2002 London Marathon.
“The aim was to raise £5,000 and here we are at ten years at £4 million.
“More than the money, Jane helped people change lives and to celebrate this we wanted to celebrate the anniversary in appropriate fashion. It’s not a knees-up, but a strength-sapping endurance challenge so with a new tub of Chamois cream and the bike out of mothballs we’ll be testing body and spirit. Let’s hope Jane’s spirit sees me through.”
The team will begin their challenge in six weeks’ time with the Paris Marathon on Sunday, April 15. For more information about the challenge, visit janetomlinsonappeal.com