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Flu no barrier to marathon man

Latest news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter
Latest news from the Suffolk Free Press, suffolkfreepress.co.uk, @sfpsudbury on Twitter

Most people would nurse flu-like symptoms by keeping warm in a blanket on the sofa while drinking a hot toddy.

But hardy Matt Fitch ran seven marathons in seven days over Christmas, raising a whopping £2,540 for a charity in Clare.

The figure is much more than the £1,000 he expected to collect for Clare Seekers – a social club for the visually impaired.

Matt, 29, said: “I had flu and a sore throat but so many people were supporting me and that really helped. I was determined to complete the marathons.

“My knees are absolutely killing me now so I am doing nothing over new year.”

Matt took inspiration from his hero, the explorer Sir Ranulph Fiennes, who ran seven marathons after a heart attack, and received back-up from colleagues at Haverhill Leisure Centre and supporters from Clare Seekers.

Matt ran six of his seven marathons in Haverhill and through the villages around the town. The second marathon on December 22 was completed on a treadmill in the leisure centre while supporters ran alongside him.

One of these was Trudi Nicoll, a co-ordinator of the beneficiary Clare Seekers, who knows Matt through attending the gym.

“We are absolutely amazed by what Matt has achieved,” she said.

“We thought people wouldn’t have a lot of money to spare over Christmas, but Matt has already raised £2,540 and there is more sponsorship to be collected.

“The fact that Matt still ran when he was ill shows that once he says he will do something, he does it. He is truly an amazing man.”

Trudi said the money collected for Clare Seekers will make a huge difference.

The club arranges outings for its members and Matt’s collection will make more trips possible.

Matt vowed to raise money for Clare Seekers when he took a friend, who is almost blind, out for the day and realised how hard it is for him and also for his wife.

To sponsor Matt, go to www.justgiving.com/yimby/matt7over7#/