Marathon effort by Wigan runners

Runners from Wigan were among the thousands of people who took part in the hottest ever London marathon.

Tuesday, 24th April 2018, 4:48 pm
Updated Tuesday, 24th April 2018, 4:56 pm
Julie Barton

Temperatures soared to 24 degrees Celsius on Sunday as more than 40,000 people pounded the streets.

The heat certainly had an impact, with runners drinking large amounts of water and reporting slower finishing times than expected.

But the participants kept going, completing their own personal challenge and many raising money for good causes.

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Laura Coleman

Julie Barton was running in support of Motor Neurone Disease Association to mark the 10th anniversary of her father Keith’s death.

It was the end of a year of challenges which saw her take part in several running races, bike rides and walks.

Julie, who lives in Winstanley and is the running co-ordinator for Inspiring Healthy Lifestyles, said she was "made up" to have raised more than £7,000 for charity.

She said: "It was obviously very hot. I did it in five hours four minutes. I was pleased with that. People were dropping like flies, it was so hot. Everyone I have spoken to did half an hour longer than in training."

Laura Coleman

She will put her running shoes on again today to lead her Julie’s Joggers running group in Ashton.

Julie’s colleague Susan Barnard crossed the finishing line in four hours 49 minutes.

It was an important day for the 45-year-old who had to defer her place in last year’s marathon after being diagnosed with breast cancer.

Susan, from Whelley, has raised more than £1,000 for Cancer Research UK.

Laura Coleman raised money for Sarcoma UK after her close friend Chris Cowley, from Orrell, died in October after battling a rare bone cancer called Ewing’s sarcoma.

The pair had talked about running the marathon together and Chris’s wife Becky was there to cheer her on.

Laura, 37, finished in five hours 59 minutes and raised more than £3,000 for charity.

She said: "It was the toughest day of my life. It was so hard because of the heat. It was so hot. Nerves were flowing in the morning and I couldn’t stop crying throughout."

Tony Barrow, from Spring View, also felt the heat and finished in five hours 21 minutes.

The former serviceman aimed to raise £2,000 for the Royal British Legion.

MP Chris Green, whose Bolton West ward includes Atherton, finished the marathon in four hours 48 minutes, raising money for domestic abuse refuge Fortalice.

The race also included 15 members of Wigan Harriers, three from Wigan Phoenix, six from Astley And Tyldesley Road Runners and a member of Parbold Pink Panthers.