Alan’s North Pole charity marathon

Alan Davison at the finish line of the North Pole Marathon.
Alan Davison at the finish line of the North Pole Marathon.

An adventure-seeker from south east Northumberland has taken on a marathon in temperatures as low as -40 degrees to raise funds for a charity close to his heart.

Alan Davison, from Ashington, was one of just 45 hardy souls who took part in the North Pole Marathon.

The 52-year-old, from Warren Court, came seventh in the event, completing the gruelling 26-mile run in six hours 55 minutes.

The race is organised by Richard Donovan, a former economist from County Galway in Ireland, and sees runners competing in temperatures of between -25 and -40 degrees on some of the world’s toughest terrain.

Donovan ran the first North Pole marathon in 2002 on his own, since then around 350 athletes from 40 nations have completed it – including seven Britons this year.

The team were flown into a makeshift runway on the polar ice cap where a 4.22km course was created for the race.

The marathon, now in its 13th year, saw Alan and the other runners traverse ice, deep snows and ridges only a matter of feet above the Arctic Ocean.

Alan is a keen athlete and has run more than 200 races from 1,500m to marathon, and every triathlon distance from sprint to Ironman.

“I still feel as competitive today as I always have when I put my toe on any start line,” he said.

He decided to enter the North Pole marathon in early 2014 whilst browsing the web and planning a solo polar trip.

During the latter part of 2014, Alan’s mother was diagnosed with cancer of the lymph system, which sparked him on to do the race in aid of the Sir Bobby Robson Foundation and Cancer Research.

Alan’s mum, Joan Nicholson, said: “It’s amazing what he has achieved, not a lot of people from Ashington can say they’ve done that.

“He’s made a lot of money by doing this, and he wanted to give it to the Bobby Robson Foundation so that it stayed local.

“When he said he was doing it, I told him it’s another mad-brained event.

“He said the scenery was amazing but he couldn’t begin to describe how cold it was.

“I’m very proud of him.”

To sponsor Alan, go to

For more information about the North Pole Marathon, visit