Ben Rhydding student's marathon ambitions

Runner Andy Sharpe with Tom Daley at last summer's London Olympics

Runner Andy Sharpe with Tom Daley at last summer's London Olympics

First published in Local news

A young man inspired by the Paralympics is preparing for the London Marathon – despite just having had surgery on his knee.

Andy Sharpe, 24, of Ben Rhydding, is a student in his final year learning business management at Leeds Metropolitan University and also works part-time at the Lister Arms pub in Ilkley.

He suffered problems with his knee cartilage after injuring himself playing football, and had an operation earlier this week, which he will take about one month to recover from.

After this he plans to start training so he can run in aid of the Clic Sergent charity, which supports young children with cancer.

He is running for this cause as it is J D Wetherspoons’ selected charity.

Andy – who met diver Tom Daley while working as a volunteer at the London 2012 Games – said: “Watching these athletes who had overcome their horrific injuries in life to compete with smiles on their faces made me determined to get my running shoes out and help a chosen charity in any way possible.”

Mr Sharpe was chosen to run along with four other employees from around the country on behalf of the national pub chain’s chosen charity.

He hopes to raise £2,500 and has currently collected £680 in just three weeks. He has been collecting prizes from local businesses and has gathered donations from 15 local businesses which will add to the funds for the cause.

This challenge is not the first Mr Sharpe has embarked on. At the age of 16 he ran from Ilkley to Bradford for charity, raising £4,500.

He will take part in the big event on April 23 covering a distance of 26 miles and 385 yards.

Mr Sharpe added: “I’ve always been into charity work. Last summer at Wetherspoons I got dressed as a chicken and raised £950 for charity in one hour.

“Working at the Olympics inspired me and I thought this marathon would be a good way to raise money for charity and to get fit and healthy myself.”

“I would like to say a thank you to the local Ilkley businesses who have donated prizes for my raffle.”

Visit justgiving.com/Andrew-Sharpe1 to donate.

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