A GULF War veteran from Widnes is training hard for the Halton Road Race to raise cash for a memorial to some of Britain's greatest war heroes.

Lee Sanger, of Graham Road, retired from the army after serving six months in Iraq and six months in Northern Ireland and is now pounding the pavements of Widnes in preparation for the race on April 8.

Mr Sanger is raising sponsorship for the Noel Chavasse VC Memorial Fund, which is campaigning for a statue to be constructed in Liverpool to the only person to win two VCs in the First World War. It aims to raise £50,000.

The memorial will also feature the names of scores of other VC holders from across Cheshire and Greater Merseyside.

The memorial will also celebrate the exploits of Halton's VC holders, whose names are inscribed on monuments on both sides of the river.

They are Lt Cmdr Thomas Wilkinson, of Widnes, who famously took on a Japanese convoy in the Yangtse River in 1941, ramming his tramp steamer Li Wo into an enemy troop carrier.

Widnes' Sgt Thomas Mottershead, of the Royal Flying Corps, was shot down over France in the First World War but managed to guide his plane back to British lines, saving the life of his observer in the process despite losing his own in the burning wreckage.

Halton's third VC winner was Runcorn's Pvt Alfred 'Todger' Jones, of the 22nd Cheshire Regiment, who single-handedly captured 102 Germans while under heavy fire in Morval, France.

Mr Sanger said: 'I'm really looking forward to taking part in the race.

'I have been in training, running 6.5 miles each day from Ditton to the cenotaph in Victoria Park.

'My family are all behind me and we have all been going round with sponsor forms to raise money for this good cause.'

Anyone wishing to sponsor Mr Sanger can contact him on 0151 510 1828.