Runners raise thousands for care charity

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A FIELD of 300 runners all played their part in raising thousands of pounds for a county charity at this year’s Druridge Bay 10k.

Karl Taylor won the event at the fourth time of asking, crossing the finishing line in 34mins 24secs.

The 22-year-old finished just over three minutes ahead of second-placed Jo Gascoigne-Owens, of Alnwick Harriers, who was first woman home.

With fund-raising for HospiceCare North Northumberland the name of the game, the event attracted participants of all abilities and ages – including a 12-week-old baby.

Little Alby Junior Lowthian Laverick, from Red Row, was pushed around the picturesque course in his pram.

He was part of an 11-strong group who were friends and family of the late Albert Shucksmith, known as Granda Shuck, who passed away in 2012.

Charismatic Granda Shuck twice completed the 10k, the second time aged 91.

Last year, the event committee launched the Albert Shucksmith Memorial Trophy – to be handed out to the oldest competitor at each race.

Fittingly, Granda Shuck’s son-in-law, Les Robinson from Hadston, took the prize this time round. The 72-year-old is Alby’s grandad.

Stan Lowes, chairman of the 10k committee, said: “It was a fantastic day. The weather was superb for runners and spectators. It was a pleasure to support a local charity, HospiceCare, for the second year.

“I would like to personally thank all the hard work from the dedicated voluntary committee members that meet all year round to organise the race. The event, now in its seventh year, has raised more than £110,000 for charities.”

It is believed that around £5,000 has already come in for HospiceCare from this year’s event and the total is expected to rise.

The charity is the main provider of palliative care in north Northumberland, supporting adults who have life-limiting illnesses.