A team of Wallies from the Countess of Chester Hospital completed the ‘toughest half marathon in the UK’ to raise thousands of pounds to create a family room.
Dressed as the book character Where’s Wally? the 21-strong team of health care professionals from the acute medical admissions team, ran the Hell Up North half marathon at Delamere Forest on Saturday.
Runner Grainne Deal said: It was an amazing experience. Challenging but very enjoyable, I am so glad I did it. Bring on next year!”
Fellow team member Gareth Thomas added: “It was pretty tough. I wish I had trained more but I would happily do it again, it was so much fun.”
On her chest-high wade through a cold lake Helen Parry added: “ I loved it but I hated Lucifer’s Lido – that was hell!”.
Their mission may have seemed impossible but between them, the nurses, clerks and healthcare assistants raised an amazing £5,000 to help refurbish an area to provide drop down beds for families of patients to use during the day and overnight.
Speaking before the run, ward manager Rachel Upson-White said: “We see and treat almost every condition you could think of!
“As well as short term admissions who are discharged following treatment or the very poorly patients we look after for a few days, there are also sad occasions when people don’t go home or the results of their tests and scans do not give the news they would hope for.
“We want to support these patients and their families at these devastating times, not just behind closed curtains in a bay but in a comfortable quiet area where they can have the privacy to sit, think and gather their thoughts or just have a bit of ‘time out’.
The team’s target is to raise £10,000 and they will throw themselves into other fundraisers to make up the shortfall.
Head of fundraising Janet Ratcliffe said: “I can genuinely say it is a privilege to be working alongside such an enthusiastic, committed and professional team of staff in the Countess. For everybody to give up their own time and put themselves through something as challenging as HellRunner with the aim of raising money to improve facilities on the acute medical unit for the patients and their families is truly incredible. I know the team are already planning lots of other fundraising events and the fundraising team will support them in any way we can to ensure they achieve their objective to provide a new family room. Thanks are also due to all the patients who have sponsored them so far.”
To help the team reach their fundraising target, visit www.justgiving.com/wherearethewallies .