Nursery owner runs up charity total with marathon

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A nursery owner helped raise almost £7,000 for charity when she ran this year’s Virgin London Marathon.

Joanne Wood, who owns Water’s Edge Nursery Ltd in Elland, ran the marathon with her brother Mark Bradbury and trainer Lorraine Lord.

Together the trio raised £6,729.78 for the charity Get Kids Going, which gives young disabled people the opportunity to play sport at all levels, including the Paralympic Games.

The day before the race, Joanne was able to meet representatives from the charity and was thanked personally by a mum whose daughter uses the charity – an experience she described as ‘incredibly humbling’.

On the day itself, Joanne was cheered on by her husband Matthew and twin seven- year-old daughters Isabelle and Emma. Joanne and Lorraine both finished in four hours, 21 minutes while Mark’s time was three hours, eight minutes.

Joanne said: “It was the most amazing experience – well worth all the training – and it was such an exciting day.

“Matthew and the girls were able to see us twice, once at the half-way point just after Tower Bridge then again at around 22 miles. It was so exciting to see them and it really helped to spur us on, knowing they were there waiting for us.”

Joanne trained for months before the event on April 24, often running at 6.30am before taking her children to school. She first started running two years ago, when she completed the Great North Run to raise cash for a cancer charity.

Joanne said the highlight was running over the iconic Tower Bridge.

She added: “It was unbelievable. I couldn’t believe how many people were cheering us on – there were crowds along the whole 26.2-mile route and the cheering really made the experience for us.

“It was definitely worth all the training and it was really lovely to meet some of the children we will be helping and to see where the money we raised will be going.”