In December 2017, Arthur Elliott, 8 years of age from Alsager, was awarded the Junior Achiever Of The Year Awards at the Everybody Junior Awards for running the length of a marathon in a month to raise money for charities he felt passionate about. Now aged 9, Arthur has gone on to complete this challenge in a week and raise almost £3000 for charities of his choice.
Earlier in 2017, Arthur found himself upset by adverts on the television that highlighted the plight of endangered animals and that some children around the world have to drink dirty water. Inspired by his Godfather, who ran in 2017’s London Marathon and raising money for his chosen charity, Arthur asked his parents if he could run a marathon to raise money for the World Wildlife Fund and WaterAid. Only being 8 years old, Arthur’s parents didn’t think that it was advisable for him to run 26.2 miles all in one go, but discussed whether he would like to try running a series of 5km runs that would add up to a whole marathon. Arthur jumped at this opportunity, setting himself the challenge of running them all in one month!
Arthur had seen on the television adverts that £15 would help provide clean water for a child and that £25 could pay for a Park Ranger salary for 10 days. As he was running a total of 43.3km, he set himself the target of raising £43 to pay for both of these things.
Starting on Saturday 8th April 2017 with the Caudwell Children’s Colour Run and finishing on Saturday 6th May 2017 with the Droid Dash, Arthur completed eight 5km runs and one 2.3km run. He ran in his own time; before school, after school, at the weekend, in rain, wind and sunshine. Having set himself a target of £43, Arthur was taken aback when his raised total reached over ten times that amount; £506.25!
For this achievement, Arthur was awarded the Junior Achiever Of The Year award at the Everybody Junior Awards and when presented his award on stage, he was asked a series of questions about his experience the last one being; “Do you have any more challenges in mind that you want to complete?”, to which Arthur answered; “I want to do the same challenge in a week”.
Arthur, now 9 years of age, decided to keep the promise he made at the Everybody Junior Awards and aim to run a marathon in a week in April 2018 to raise more money for WaterAid and Shelter charities. Arthur commented: “I chose WaterAid because I have seen the adverts on TV and it upset me so I wanted to get children clean water. I chose Shelter because when I went to France I saw people on the streets and it made me upset and wanted to help them.”
After deciding to take on his Marathon in a week challenge, Arthur began to practice his running at Cumberland Arena’s Junior Athletics sessions and with his dad after school. Between Monday 16th April and Sunday 22nd April, Arthur then ran just over 6km a day after school for a week with his dad there to support him. On the Friday, his school, Pikemere School, cheered him off and released balloons into the sky as he began his run. On the Sunday, friends and family from around the country gathered at the 13 Club in Alsager, some of which, ran Arthur’s final 6km with him, and some of which waited eagerly at the finish line to celebrate his fantastic achievement.
Arthur completed his marathon in a week challenge with ease arriving back into the 13 club with a smile on his face to all of his family and friends. His family and friends applauded as he arrived and he was presented with a virtual running challenge London 2018 medal that the company had sent down for him. He then went inside to enjoy a well deserved bite to eat and party with his friends.
Arthur has now raised an incredible £2,297.50 including Gift Aid for his two chosen charities and WaterAid have invited him down to their London offices to hear all about his fundraising experiences!
If you are an Everybody member and want to share your story with us, whether this be about a fundraising event, weight loss milestone, fitness event experience etc, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org and let others be inspired by your achievements.
Notes to Editor
Everybody Sport & Recreation – Everybody Sport and Recreation is a registered charity and company limited by guarantee. As a Health and Wellbeing Charity, Everybody Sport and Recreation aims to provide ‘leisure for life’ by changing lives through healthy recreation. The charity operates 15 leisure facilities across the Cheshire East region as well as a range of Health, Leisure Development and Outreach programmes and the new Everybody Academy, providing local training and career opportunities. For more information please visit: www.everybody.org.uk or follow on Twitter @ebleisure.
Name: Sophie Coleman