Driv­ing rain has run­ners on their last legs for FAV

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Battling Hurricane Bertha - By Sa­man­tha Wil­liams

Run­ners faced the re­mains of Hurricane Bertha at a char­ity race held in Ash­ford on Sun­day.

Winds of more than 40mph and heavy rain blew across the Ash­ford Rugby Club, off Can­ter­bury Road, where 44 run­ners took part in a 5k race or­gan­ised by char­ity Find A Voice (FAV).

De­spite the weather, it took just 17 min­utes and 14 sec­onds for the first run­ner, Ash­ford Ath­let­ics Club mem­ber Matthew Hog­ben, to cross the fin­ish line.

Eleven chil­dren also en­tered a 1k fun run.

FAV pres­i­dent Alas­tair Dutch said: “We were com­pletely drenched.

“Bear­ing in mind when we opened the cur­tains it looked like we should be build­ing an ark, not run­ning a race, we still had around 60 run­ners take part.

“We were pleased peo­ple still turned up and sup­ported us. Peo­ple who en­joy run­ning would run through a snow­storm, I sus­pect.”

Both races were kicked off by TV pre­sen­ter and for­mer Ash­ford school­boy Alex Brooker, 30, who be­come a well-known face on TV af­ter land­ing roles pre­sent­ing Chan­nel 4’s The Last Leg and The Jump, as well as a doc­u­men­tary about male weight loss.

The trained jour­nal­ist, who has a pros­thetic right leg and hand dis­abil­i­ties, worked as a sports reporter be­fore be­ing se­lected to help cover the Olympic and Par­a­lympic Games for Chan­nel 4 in 2012.

The day raised around £1,300 in to­tal af­ter Bar­clays agreed to match fund­ing.

FAV’s Dy­lan Jones said: “The day went re­ally well. Every­one per­se­vered for a great cause, which we were pleased to see.

“We’d love to make this an an­nual event.”

FAV, based in Beaver Road, is ded­i­cated to sup­port­ing peo­ple with speech, lan­guage and com­mu­ni­ca­tion dif­fi­cul­ties through­out Kent and be­yond.

Go to www.fin­d­avoice.org.uk for more in­for­ma­tion

Pic­ture: Matt Bris­tow FM3342999

Alex Booker, co-host of Chan­nel 4’s The Last Leg, gets ready to start the race

FM3343007

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