Warwickshire novice runner Jeff Hurlock is taking on his first marathon to fund vital dementia research.
The AXA regional survey manager will run the London Marathon on 24 April this year to raise funds for Alzheimer’s Research UK in support of his friends and family who have lost someone to dementia.
The 44-year-old from Heathcote’s last big running event was the Great Birmingham Run half-marathon four years ago. He spoke of the great personal challenge posed by the London Marathon and his hope that having a worthwhile cause to run for and goal would help him in his training.
“I’m an occasional runner and I think it was a moment of madness which saw me enter the London Marathon. I used to look at people taking part and think it would be a huge challenge and now here I am running it! I’ll really need to focus to complete it, anything under four hours thirty minutes and I’ll be happy. It was one of those things to tick off the bucket list and from close friends and family’s experiences with dementia I thought running for Alzheimer’s Research UK was a very worthwhile cause.”
“My mother Pauline passed away last August and one of her close friends had been living with dementia. She worked in London in the fifties and it was one of her early work colleagues who was diagnosed. My Mum found their diagnosis and decline in health extremely sad. Also, one of my work colleague’s mother’s is in care with dementia at the moment. The outlook for those diagnosed with dementia is bleak because there is no cure yet, that’s why it’s such an important cause to raise money for.”
Jeff has raised £350 of his £500 target for the UK’s leading dementia research charity and hopes that he will beat his target by finishing the marathon.
“I hope the money I raise for Alzheimer’s Research UK will give hope to future generations and stop others going through the heart-breaking experience of losing a close friend or family member to dementia.”
Dementia is caused by brain diseases, most commonly Alzheimer’s, which result in the death of brain cells and weaken the brain’s ability to function properly. Early symptoms can include problems with memory and thinking, but as brain cell death becomes more widespread, physical functions such as walking and even swallowing can be affected.
Currently 850,000 people live with dementia in the UK and around 7,800 live in Warwickshire alone. Vicky Naylor, Corporate Partnerships Officer at Alzheimer’s Research UK, said:
“At the moment there is no cure for dementia, a condition which one person every three minutes will develop in the UK this year. The need for research to beat this cruel condition has never been greater.”
“We are so grateful that Jeff has chosen to support our research as he takes on the huge personal challenge of running the London Marathon. The money he raises will help Alzheimer’s Research UK fund world-class studies focusing on diagnosis, prevention and treatments to defeat dementia.”
To sponsor Jeff, visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/JeffHurlock.
For further information about Alzheimer’s Research UK, or to find out more about fundraising for the charity, call 0300 111 5555 or visit www.alzheimersresearchuk.org.