Alice, 5, gets her running shoes on for a Longton marathon for the love of Grandma

Five-year-old Alice Fish will run in a fund-raising marathon next month to show just how much she loves her grandma.

Monday, 13th September 2021, 5:06 pm
Alice in training with her dad for the Longton run.

The energetic primary school pupil is in training to jog alongside her dad Michael for a lap of his virtual London Marathon in aid of the Stroke Association.

Michael is running a full 26.2 miles around Longton after his mother-in-law Sandra Hurst was struck down by a severe stroke earlier this year.

Little Alice wanted to do her bit, so she will accompany him for a 1.16-mile loop around the village to raise money for the charity which helps stroke victims and their families.

Before her stroke, grandma Sandra Hurst with her loving granddaughter Alice.

"Alice is amazing and has already managed just short of a mile - which is pretty impressive for a five-year-old," said Michael who is appealing for other volunteers to join him on his epic run on London Marathon weekend (Saturday/Sunday October 2/3).

"Around 1.2 miles might be a bit much for her, but we'll see how she is on the day.

"We're doing it because I wanted to give something back to the Stroke Association.

"I had hoped to do the real London Marathon that weekend and I'd been accepted. But things have been pretty tough for the family since Sandra was taken ill, so I've not really been able to prepare properly.

Michael is ready to give Alice a lift if her legs get tired.

"I didn't want to abandon it altogether, so I decided I'd do my version of the race around Longton instead. My target is to raise at least £1,000, but I'd like to double that if I can."

Sandra, 68, who is currently recovering in a Much Hoole nursing home, was taken ill at home in Longton in February. Initially she seemed to be making a good recovery, but complications set in and now she is confined to a wheelchair.

Michael, 42, has broken his race up into eight segments, five of them on the Saturday and the remaining three the following day. They range from 1.16 miles to 6.26 miles.

They all start and finish at the Lemon Tree cafe bar in Liverpool Road and Alice will be attempting leg number four - the shortest loop - on Saturday.

"We are making it a family event at the Lemon Tree and I'm hoping people will join me to run one or more of the legs and collect sponsorship," he added. "We've also set up a JustGiving page if people want to make a donation."

Michael's wife Amanda said: "I'm so proud of what Alice and Michael are doing for Mum. They're both brilliant.

"When she suffered her stroke it came completely out of the blue. She was a fit and healthy person who wasn't overweight and lived a healthy lifestyle.

"At first it didn't seem too serious and she seemed to be recovering. But suddenly things just changed. At one point it was touch and go whether she would survive.

"We are hoping to get Mum home eventually, but at the moment she needs to be in a care home."

To donate to the fundraiser for the Stroke Association go to: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Michael-Fish3

To run part of the course with Michael, go to the Lemon Tree cafe bar page on Facebook.

The running starts at 11am on both days.