Lancashire folk are really good sports

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Lancashire folk dug out their running kits and dusted off their trainers for this year’s Sports Relief.

Over the weekend, thousands of people took part in events to raise money for charity work in this country and abroad.

Picture shows Chloe Bidle (Dark Hair) aged 14 and Megan Bond aged 14 both from preston who took part in the Sport Relief mile held at Avenham Park

Picture shows Chloe Bidle (Dark Hair) aged 14 and Megan Bond aged 14 both from preston who took part in the Sport Relief mile held at Avenham Park

Yesterday, hundreds dashed through Avenham and Miller parks for the Sainsbury’s Sport Relief Mile, with the more adventurous opting for a three or six-mile course.

In Chorley, people sprinted, jogged and walked the same distances through Astley Park, some donning fancy dress for the occasion.

For 13-year-old Grace, of Eccleston, the Sports Relief mile was only the beginning of a day’s exercise, as she had set herself the task of doing 20 sports in one day, including basketball, swimming, snooker, boules, tennis, swimming and golf, to raise sponsorship money.

Her dad, David Abberley, said: “Grace is quite sporty anyway.

“She is a member of the David Lloyd gym in Chorley and plays tennis for Bishop Rawstorne school.

“After seeing a TV advert for Sports Relief, she decided she wanted to help.

“It’s been quite a challenge, and I’ve been chief bag handler and driver, but it’s been worth it as she’s managed to get around £300 in sponsorship.”

Elsewhere, 15 Bowker staff cycled 130 miles in a day from Preston to Hull in aid of Sport Relief, the MND Association and St Catherine’s Hospice.

They set off at 7am from Bowker on Preston Docks, and the route took the amateur cyclists from coast to coast, a challenge which traditionally takes two days to complete.

More than 200 aerospace workers had their own attempt at a take-off in the name of Sports Relief on Friday.

Staff from BAE Systems took to the runway at the company’s site in Warton for a mile run or walk to raise £1,000.

The firm shut down the runway for nearly an hour in the morning as workers dressed in everything from shirts and ties to onesies to take on a loop down the runway.

Peter Boddy, who works in the avionics team on the 
Typhoon jet, said the wind gusting down the runway had been against the runners on their way back to the finish line, but that it had been a “brilliant event”.

He said: “Everyone was cheering and clapping each other over the line. There was a real camaraderie among the people taking part.”

Three friends from Longridge High School also got in on the fundraising act, albeit in a less sporty way.

Laura McEvoy, 12, Rosie Hendry, 12, and Cara-Jane Englishby, 13, managed to raise £100 with their 48-hour ‘wake-a-thon’.

They kept themselves awake by listening to music and playing on computer games.