Downham man to realise his marathon dream

Matthew Ryan of Downham Market is to run the London Marathon fo Wellchild. Charity ANL-160104-133539009
Matthew Ryan of Downham Market is to run the London Marathon fo Wellchild. Charity ANL-160104-133539009
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A keen runner from Downham will realise his ambition of competing in the London Marathon when he takes part in the event next weekend.

Matthew Ryan, 39, will take to capital for the gruelling 26.2-mile slog and is aiming to break the five-hour barrier in his debut run.

The construction manager, who is raising money for Wellchild, has followed a vigorous 16-week training regime.

Mr Ryan, who has twice competed in the Great North Run as well as other half-marathons, said: “It has always been a goal of mine to do the London marathon.

“I’d like to complete it in under five hours. The time isn’t important, but raising money for charity is.

“I wanted to do something for a charity which helps sick children.

“Without the help and support of charities like Wellchild, thousands of children in the UK would not get the after care and support they so desperately need.

“The training programme I am putting myself through is gruelling, but every mile, blister and aching muscle will be worth it.”

Mr Ryan, who hopes to raise a total of £3,000, thanked his sister Kate Skipper for helping with fundraising, as well as Hillcrest School, in Downham, who will be doing a non-uniform day to raise funds.

He also thanked Arc Fabrications, JA Phillips Associates, Yallop Cladding and Roofing specialists, Ash-Lacy and Bilton and Johnson for their support.

Anyone who wishes to Mr Ryan’s chosen charity, should visit www.justgiving.com/Matthew-ryan11/