Run­ner takes on 20km scare­crow chal­lenge

Hinckley Times - - PAST TIMES - DANIELLE EAS­TON danielle.eas­ton@reach­plc.com

SELFIE Queen Anne Bland en­dured a five-hour run around the vil­lage of Des­ford, stop­ping to pose with more than 190 scare­crows at the an­nual fes­ti­val.

For the sec­ond con­sec­u­tive year, 49-year-old Anne, who lives in the vil­lage, set her­self the chal­lenge of run­ning the en­tire trail, stop­ping only to take a pic­ture with the scare­crows on dis­play.

This year’s chal­lenge, dubbed Bland on the Run, was made more dif­fi­cult by the sheer num­ber of en­tries to this year’s event, mean­ing Anne cov­ered a dis­tance of al­most 20km.

Anne chose to com­plete this year’s chal­lenge by rais­ing money for a char­ity of her choice, she chose to run in aid of Loros, and has al­ready col­lected hun­dreds of pounds for the ap­peal.

“I had an amaz­ing day last year,” she said, “Al­though I ran for miles and was on my feet for sev­eral hours it was a won­der­ful at­mos­phere and the whole vil­lage was ab­so­lutely buzzing.

“This year was no dif­fer­ent. I thor­oughly en­joyed the en­tire experience and to col­lect so much for Loros was won­der­ful.”

Hun­cote Har­ri­ers mem­ber, Anne, ran with a Loros col­lect­ing tin while her daugh­ters 11-yearold Beth and six-year-old Pollyanna, col­lected money for the char­ity out­side their Glouces­ter Close home, where their very own scare­crows stood.

“The hard­est part wasn’t the run­ning, but the pos­ing and pic­ture-tak­ing at each scare­crow, 190 pouts don’t come easy, you know!” she added.

A fundrais­ing page has also been ac­cept­ing do­na­tions for Anne’s mam­moth chal­lenge, with the cur­rent to­tal reach­ing £350.

Des­ford’s an­nual scare­crow fes­ti­val came to an end af­ter again an­other suc­cess­ful year of en­tries, top­ping last year’s with an ad­di­tional 70 ex­hibits.

This year’s scare­crows var­ied from a range of sub­jects in­clud­ing char­ac­ters from films, ac­tors, awards cer­e­monies and Hol­ly­wood scenes.

Anne’s run­ning trail took her on an ad­ven­ture from the first scare­crow of In­di­ana Jones, to a gi­ant Osc­car on Peck­le­ton View, which also in­cluded her own Gene Kelly ex­hibit which recre­ated the iconic scene from Sin­gin’ in the Rain.

“I loved ev­ery single sec­ond of the chal­lenge”, said Anne.

“Ev­ery­one was so friendly and the at­mos­phere around Des­ford was amaz­ing.

“See­ing so many happy faces and fam­i­lies out in force was very spe­cial.

“The high­light, though, was def­i­nitely hav­ing my fam­ily wait­ing for me with our scare­crow to­wards the end of the trail.

“I def­i­nitely plan to make it an an­nual run­ning chal­lenge.”

For photo op­porut­ni­ties, or any futher in­for­ma­tion about the Bland on the Run chal­lenge, you can con­tact the fundrais­ing team at dib­fundrais­ing@hot­mail.com or through the web­site at www. des­fordinbloom.co.uk.

49-year-old Anne Bland above with her fam­ily, hus­band Paul and daugh­ters Beth and Pollyanna, tak­ing a selfie with their very own scare­crow, an iconic scene from Gene Kelly’s Sin­gin’ in the Rain

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