Three runners have put their best feet forward to raise more than £500 for a children’s charity, after taking part in the ABP Newport Wales Marathon and 10K.

As sponsors of the inaugural race, Friars Walk had free spaces up for grabs in both the full marathon and the 10K distances – with the condition that anyone who wanted to get running did so by raising all-important funds for the centre’s chartable partners, the Sparkle Appeal.

Three very worthy participants stepped forward, with Personal Trainer Chris Slight taking on the challenge of running the full 26.2 miles whilst PA Support Officer Samantha Sutton and student Rebecca Skinner both ran in the 10K. After weeks of training and plenty of kind donations from friends and family, the trio crossed the finish line of both races with £534 raised.

“When we became a sponsor of the ABP Newport Wales Marathon and 10K, we wanted to put the spaces that we had in both races to good use,” said Friars Walk Centre Director, Simon Pullen. “We felt that helping our charitable partner, the Sparkle Appeal, was a great way to do just that.”

“I’m delighted that Chris, Samantha and Rebecca all volunteered to take part and after plenty of hard work and dedication it’s great that they’ve been able to raise more than £500 for such a worthwhile cause and a charity that everyone at Friars Walk is passionate about helping. The marathon itself was a great day in the city and we enjoyed an extremely busy day of Sunday trading.”

Personal Trainer Chris Slight said he was pleased that he could be a part of supporting the Sparkle Appeal. “The marathon was a real challenge, but it was so worth it to know that I’ve helped make a difference for an important charity that cares for so many children and their families across our community.”

The Sparkle Appeal is a charity that supports the Serennu Children’s Centre that provides access to a number of vital services including doctors, psychologists, social workers and nurses – all in one location. This means that parents don’t have to take their children to multiple destinations for care and provides consistency to those being treated and to the whole family.

Seren Harbon, Fundraising and Events Officer at the Sparkle Appeal, said: “We are incredibly grateful that Chris, Samantha and Rebecca wanted to support Sparkle. The work that we do would not be possible without the support of the local community.

“We work with over 300 children each week, the money raised by Friars Walk and the runners will help provide a number of different leisure services for children and young people with disabilities and/or developmental difficulties. The support received by Friars Walk was fantastic and we look forward to working with them again in the future.”