Gosport 10-year-old cheered on to marathon finish line by neighbours after raising £1,700 for Cancer Research UK

NEIGHBOURS cheered on a young fundraiser’s final stretch of a month-long marathon which has raised hundreds for charity.

Wednesday, 10th February 2021, 12:09 pm
Oliver Shann, 10 from Elson, ran a marathon in January for Cancer Research UK. Pictured: Oliver with his medal and certificate and, right, crossing the finish line

Taking on the cold and rain, Oliver Shann from Elson in Gosport ran the 26.2-mile distance of a marathon throughout January.

The 10-year-old was joined on his challenge by his mum Clare and dad Ryan, who spurred him on to keep going.

Oliver said: ‘I wanted to set myself some goals for 2021 and my mum saw this on Facebook and mentioned it to me.

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‘Because of Covid, charities aren’t getting as much money so I wanted to do something to help them.

‘It was quite hard sometimes especially when it was raining. Sometimes I would have to spur my mum on and other times she would have to spur me on. Dad’s really fit so he was fine.’

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Oliver’s efforts have raised £1,700 for Cancer Research UK, smashing his £200 target and spurring him on to continue his charitable challenges.

He said: ‘It gives me a warm feeling, I can’t believe I raised that much money and I want to thank everyone that donated.’

The final day of running saw the close-knit community of Palmyra Road, where the Shann family lives, come out in support of Oliver’s efforts.

Neighbours in the street have been supporting each other all throughout the pandemic, with plenty of ideas to keep spirits high.

People have put up banners for neighbours’ birthdays, taken part in book swaps, decorated their windows for Advent and more.

For the final run, they played The Final Countdown and stretched a finishing line ribbon across the road for Oliver.

Clare said: ‘I really admire that he’s stuck with it. He’s been absolutely brilliant. Ryan and I just want to say how proud we are of his commitment and dedication.

‘It was really lovely for all the neighbours to come out in support. My neighbours have been absolutely amazing throughout this.

‘Community spirit in Palmyra Road has been our silver lining throughout the last year.’

Oliver has now signed up to ride 52 miles on a bike for dementia throughout February, and he is going to try and continuously do something throughout the year to raise money.

A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron

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