Woman’s marathon bid to support friend

Share Button
Hannah Roberts (left) and Hannah Blake (right). Pic © Steve Blake

Hannah Roberts (left) and Hannah Blake (right). Pic © Steve Blake

A Wirral woman is competing in next month’s London Marathon in aid of the Anthony Nolan charity after her close friend was diagnosed with blood cancer.

Hannah Blake, 24, from West Kirby, is hoping to raise £5,000 for the charity that helps match donors of blood stems cells and bone marrows to those in need of a life-saving transplant.

Her friend of over ten years, Hannah Roberts, was diagnosed with blood cancer at just 18 and has undergone two bone marrow operations since her diagnosis.

Blake told JMU Journalism: “Anthony Nolan does a wonderful job, helping to save the lives of people with blood cancer. I know that only too well from seeing my good friend, Hannah and her family battle through her fight with the disease and other friends and family who have also found a match for a donor transplant through Anthony Nolan.

“This seemed such a great cause and I’m delighted to be able to do my bit to help. It is such a motivation, knowing I could be running to save someone’s life.”

The UK’s bone marrow donor register relies almost solely on charitable donations, with the charity offering support and advice to those suffering with the disease, as well as educating others about the difference they can make by registering to become a donor.

Hannah, a project manager for cip marketing, is following a gruelling marathon training programme to get her up to speed and is just over halfway through her preparation, running her furthest distance of 16 miles last weekend.

The 24-year-old admitted she is using her friend’s battle with the disease as inspiration to get herself through the tough training sessions.

She told JMU Journalism: “My legs do start to ache so I just think of what I am doing it for and push through the pain. I just think of Hannah and how much we have raised (just under £3000) so the least I can do is battle through 26.2 miles.”

Roberts is grateful for her friend’s fundraising efforts, telling JMU Journalism: “It really does mean the world to me. Anthony Nolan needs heroes giving (bone) marrow, but it also needs heroes like Hannah to help make their work possible.”

Blake is also hosting a fundraising quiz night at the Black Horse Pub in Heswall on Thursday, 19th March.

You can donate to the cause on Just Giving. To register as a bone marrow donor, go to the Anthony Nolan website.

About Dan Goulding, JMU Journalism