Gloucester Virtual 10k raises £10k

Presentation of proceeds to Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice by Lee Summers, Gloucester Quays Rotary President

The original historic Gloucester 10k was due to be run for the 8th time this year. It was conceived 8 years ago after a disastrous commercial Gloucester 10k and an immediate campaign along the lines of “Surely we can organise a 10k in our City”. The idea was to have an attractive race showcasing Gloucester, getting the community involved in organising the race, enjoying the race and with all proceeds going back to the community. Over the previous 7 years with massive assistance from the Gloucester community the race has been able to pour back all of the proceeds, amounting to over £50,000 into the Gloucestershire community.

Race Director, Nigel Tillott said “This year we held on as long as possible, but by mid-May we had to make a call. Had we held on any longer major spending commitments would have been made. Gloucester Quays Rotary has been one of the major organisers of the event from Day 1 and didn’t want to let it go. It had already been agreed that Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice would be a major beneficiary of the run and initial planning had started in coordination with the Charity. So, the Gloucester Virtual 10k was launched with Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice being the beneficiary with only 1 month to the race. We had no idea how successful it would be but thought that Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice alongside many other charities really needed the funds as most of its fundraising sources had dried up with Covid-19. Therefore, we thought that even if we raised a little money it would be very helpful.

We have been knocked out by the way the people of Gloucester and beyond, even as far as Australia, have bought into the concept. A total of 560 runners signed up in end with over 40 signing up after the race weekend started. Many people who would never have thought of entering a ‘real’ race signed up.”

Lee Summers, President of Gloucester Quays Rotary Club said “Wow Everyone! I am amazed and incredibly delighted to be able to say that through your efforts the event has raised £10k in 10k. This has been through the entry fees, commercial sponsorships, donations from those unable to run the original race and sponsorship donations given to those taking part and then topped up to £10k by Gloucester Quays Rotary to reach the magic £10k in 10k. Thank you so much to all those that helped contribute to this total in so many different ways.”

Matt Reay, Senior Community Fundraiser at Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice said “When we got the call back in early March to say the Gloucester 10k had chosen to support Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice we were absolutely delighted and couldn’t wait to partner with them with the event. Sadly, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the 10k couldn’t bring everyone together in Gloucester Park this year, however that didn’t stop Davies & Partners solicitors and the wonderful Gloucester Quays Rotary from hosting what turned out to be an amazing virtual event. It brought the Gloucester community together online, encouraging people to cover 10k across the weekend in aid of the hospice.

On behalf of all the Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice staff, volunteers, patients and their loved ones we want to say a huge thank to everyone involved in making the virtual event the success it was. To the hundreds that entered and the 461 who completed their own 10k, we really can’t thank you enough for your support. By taking part you’ve enabled the hospice to benefit from funds we’d otherwise have missed out on. This will now directly benefit and provide care for patients and families right across Gloucestershire at this challenging time. We really were touched reading some of the heart-warming stories and motivations of people taking part, from those running in memory of loved ones to those currently experiencing our care.
To put the incredible funds raised from the event into context it costs £10,000 a day to provide all our services, including the only inpatient unit in the county, our day services and our hospice at home services. You can see the direct impact of every penny raised and how it will make a huge difference to local families.

For anyone looking to maintain their fitness and enter their next virtual 10k, or even step up to a half marathon distance, our Virtual event in September has three distances. You can run it your own way just as you did for the Gloucester 10k in multiple segments. We’d love you to join Team Incredible for FREE this September:”

For the record, the male fastest time was Steve Kenyon with a fantastic 33 minutes 16 seconds. The first female was Anna Midgley who eased round in 42 minutes 49 seconds. It wasn’t all about the times though. It was about having some fun while helping with fitness and raising monies for charity. We recognise this through the virtual accolades, all manner of achievements. Catch the picture of Dursley Running Club who won the accolade for best fancy-dress theme in rainbow tutus and butterfly wings on their backs. Also, a mention for Andy Jarrett who captured the most metres ascended leg for 6 consecutive ascents of Robinswood Hill – nothing like taking it easy Andy when you had the whole of the Severn Vale to choose from! For more virtual accolades and photos see the results and accolades section of the website. For inspiration go to the stories section of the site, for example “I have never run a10k before! I wanted to do this in memory of my lovely Dad Geoff who passed away at the end of January. He bravely fought prostrate and bone cancer. My battle to run the 10k was meant to mirror some of his struggle with this horrible disease. I made it and am very proud of myself. I even impressed by partner who had made me coffee and breakfast when I got back – that is unheard of!” “Mum passed away in July 2014 at Leckhampton Hospice. The care she received and the support they provided to us was amazing. This run was in her memory.”

There are many more quotes and amazing stories. Over the weekend of 4th and 5th July it was uplifting to see so many people running in Gloucester and surrounding areas with their Virtual 10k numbers proudly displayed.

Gloucester Quays Rotary is an organisation of local people from different walks of life who get together for fun and friendship and seek to put something back in the Gloucester and Gloucestershire community through fundraising events and providing other assistance within the community. Its next event is working together with The Pied Piper Appeal in its virtual cycling challenge – which runs from 25th July to 2nd August.

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