Four care workers run for eight hours to raise fun for cardiac units in Northampton

Gemma Newell and Kelly Kostova run for 8 hours to raise money for NGH cardiac units
Gemma Newell and Kelly Kostova run for 8 hours to raise money for NGH cardiac units

Four staff members at two Northampton care homes took part in an eight-hour run to raise money for hospital cardiac units.

The four care providers: Kelly Kostova and Gemma Newell from Spencer House and Ellis Hopper and Caroline Fennell from Cliftonville Care Home - both on Cliftonville Road in the town centre - completed the marathon challenge on treadmills in the residential homes.

Mum-of-two, Mrs Kostova, aged 37, said: “It was tough, but the support we had from our friends, family and residents was absolutely amazing. They cheered us on and helped us to power on through, even at the points when we thought we would hit a wall.”

Both pairs completed their challenges between 10am-6pm yesterday (Friday), stopping only for toilet breaks, and each covered a distance of between 31-38km - just under the distance of a full marathon.

Also marking national Heart Month, they have so far raised around £1,000 with the event, both through their Just Giving page and own sponsors, as well as collection buckets on the day. The funds will go towards supporting cardiac units at Northampton General Hospital (NGH).

Mrs Kostova said: “The buckets were full at the end of the day, even with paper, which was really overwhelming to see. Visitors who came in more than once during the day said it was crazy that we were still going.

“We are still pinching ourselves at what we have achieved, but today I will be spending most of the day in my pyjamas with my kids.”

Miss Newell, aged 28, said: “It got quite emotional by the end, but we did it.

“It’s a cause very close to us because every day we work closely with the people who will benefit from this sort of funding. It really makes you want to push yourself, so it was a personal challenge for us as well.”

The four runners have been friends for more than three years and have already taken part in physical challenges to raise money for British Heart Foundation, the chosen charity of their employer, Avery Healthcare. To help raise their fundraising total further, visit: