Thousands set to do their bit for Sport Relief

Sainsbury staff Dan Atkinson, Shannon Pickering and Sharon Smith with colleagues in Parliament Street

Sainsbury’s fundraisers, above, with their mascot Shannyn Brogan

Howard Brown, left, with his dog Ciara, preparing for the Sport Relief Challenge

Selby High School deputy principal Janet Meenaghan, below left, presents the Sport Relief bake-off prize to Sue Wilkinson for her tray bake

Updated in News

COMMUNITY heroes are throwing themselves into one of the UK's biggest fundraising events to help out people leading tough lives across the globe, writes Chloe Farand.

Sport Relief, which takes place on alternate years to Red Nose Day, raised more than £60 million in 2012, and supporters are gearing up to run, cycle or swim this weekend to beat that.

Among them is retired judge Howard Brown, from Askham Bryan, who is believed to be the most sponsored individual in the country running a Sport Relief mile, having so far raised £3,280. He hopes to reach £5,280.

Mr Brown, 69, was diagnosed with Parkinson's in 2010, and had to retire in September 2012.

In January, his son Ross, 35, successfully completed an iron man marathon in Australia in 10h25mn which sparked his father’s determination to undertake the Sport Relief challenge.

“Today running a mile is hell of an achievement and I hope to encourage other people to keep going,” said Mr Brown, who will be running with Ciara, his golden retriever.

“Everyone knows her in the village, she isn’t even two years old and full of youth and exuberance.”

Mr Brown who also has a daughter, Louise, has been training with his physiotherapist Dobrinka Ivanov for the past 12 weeks.

He said: “When I told her that I was running the mile for Sport Relief she got right behind me and we are now working on my physique so that I can do it.”

They have been running together every weekend and regular exercises have been added to Mr Brown’s physio programme to prepare him for Sunday’s race at Rawcliffe Park.

He said he was very grateful to everyone who sponsored him with a special mention to his wife Jacquie for her support.

Shannon Pickering, manager of the Sainsbury's Fulford Road store, organised for 30 colleagues from Scarborough, Harrogate, Leeds and York to gather on Parliament Street to fundraise. The team raised over £500 in an hour and a half.

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