Kent personal trainer to run London Marathon for Alzheimer’s Research UK

A personal trainer from Westerham, Kent, will tackle this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon in memory of his grandma to boost funds for Alzheimer’s Research UK. Martin Mitchener signed up for the 26.2-mile race across the capital just months after Yvonne Mitchener, from Beckenham, died with vascular dementia last year. The 26 year old father-of-one hopes to raise at least £1,800 for the UK’s leading dementia research charity.

Posted on 10th April 2014

A personal trainer from Westerham, Kent, will tackle this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon in memory of his grandma to boost funds for Alzheimer’s Research UK. Martin Mitchener signed up for the 26.2-mile race across the capital just months after Yvonne Mitchener, from Beckenham, died with vascular dementia last year. The 26 year old father-of-one hopes to raise at least £1,800 for the UK’s leading dementia research charity.

Martin explained his reasons for supporting the dementia research experts by running the iconic marathon:

“My family and I watched my grandma struggle with vascular dementia from 1997. She was a fantastic lady who always looked after us. Seeing the distress dementia caused to her and those around her was heartbreaking. She would have been particularly saddened had she known the level of care she would ultimately require as she was always such a proud, independent lady.

“By the beginning of 2013 she could barely speak a sentence, despite having been a well-spoken, educated lady who taught English as a school teacher. Nevertheless, she never lost her kind and loving disposition. I was able to introduce her to my daughter – her great-grandaughter – shortly before she died, which put a smile on her face. During her battle with dementia, I learned just how desperately underfunded research into the condition is. That’s why I’m supporting Alzheimer’s Research UK.”

Martin added:

“I ran quite well at school but then I didn’t really run between the ages of 13 and 26. But since taking it up again I’m really enjoying it. I’ve given up alcohol to help my training and I’m up to running 18 miles, so I feel ready for the big day. The support I’ve had so far has been fantastic. I’d like to say a special thank you to Neale Sadlier, landlord of the Little Grasshopper in Westerham, who donated £315 from a charity golf day to my total.”

Jodie Vaughan, Community Fundraising Manager at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:
“We couldn’t be more grateful to Martin for taking on this year’s Virgin Money London Marathon for Alzheimer’s Research UK and we wish him every success on the day. Last year our fantastic London Marathon runners raised an incredible £113,500, enough to fund almost four complete pilot projects. Every £20 Martin raises is enough to pay for an hour of pioneering research, bringing us closer to finding ways to diagnose, prevent, treat and cure Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

“There are hundreds of thousands of people across the UK living with dementia today, including over 17,000 people in Kent – one of the highest county figures. Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia pose one of the greatest threats to public health now and in the future. Research is the only answer but funding still lags far behind other serious diseases. We rely on wonderful supporters like Martin to fund our world-class research.”

To help Martin raise money for Alzheimer’s Research UK’s groundbreaking research, donate or track his progress online.

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