Wigan school teacher celebrates fund-raising success and world record

An teacher from a Wigan school has celebrated raising a considerable amount of money for charity all while writing her name in the book of Guinness World Records.

Belinda Neild, an art teacher at Fred Longworth High in Tyldesley, achieved a unique record during the London Marathon in September.

While running 26km for St Ann’s Hospice, she not only raised £20,000 for charity but became the fastest woman to run a marathon dressed as an item of stationery!

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The tutor began raising money for St Ann’s Hospice over the last few years in memory of her mother who was a patient at the Little Hulton site and died there in 2011.

Belinda receiving her Guinness World Record

From the London Marathon alone, Belinda raised £5,395 and gained the title “the fastest pencil in Salford” from her supporters.

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Speaking at the event to celebrate her success, Belinda said “Emotional is not the word, I’m absolutely blown away by all the support. Every penny really does make a difference, I can’t believe I’ve raised my target of £20,000. It really goes to show how every single donation makes a difference.”

The 47-year-old from Salford began running as a coping mechanism for grief after losing her father-in-law, Kevin Neild, and aunt, Sandra McStravick, shortly after her mum passed away from cancer.

Belinda with the hospice team and family

Keeping the art theme, she has previously run a marathon dressed as a crayon.

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Director of Clinical Services for St Ann’s Hospice – Emma Dixon, was delighted that Belinda could be celebrated for all the fund-raising she has done for the charity.

Emma said, “We are so grateful that Belinda has raised such a phenomenal amount of money for us. It means the world to us that supporters like Belinda dedicate so much of their time to supporting us and raising awareness of our services.

"Not every charity can say they have a Guinness World Record holder as one of their supporters!”

The event was a way to recognise the incredible amount of money that she has raised and to show how thankful that everyone is at the hospice. Her husband Steve is hoping to take part in the Marathon next year in aid of the hospice, as he’s determined to beat the total that Belinda had raised.