Dad keeps on running for charity

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A dad has completed five runs in six months to raise money for charity.

Mark Sproat started with the North Tyneside 10k in April, before taking on the Bupa Great North 10k in July, the Great North Run in September and finally the Great Edinburgh 10k and Newcastle Stampede last month.

The 36-year-old has also notched up hundreds more miles in training.

He said: “With 54,000 runners, and the cheering from the crowds, the atmosphere at the Great North Run was excellent.

“It was my first half-marathon, and I was really pleased with my time of 1hr 48mins. I was expecting not to be able to walk the day after, but I was fine.”

He has raised more than £1,300 for Bowel and Cancer Research, a charity he picked after his grandmother died of bowel cancer and his mum Catherine beat the disease a few years ago.

Mark, of Ashington, got the running bug after he quit a 20-year smoking habit a year ago. Now he’s a new man, and his family have started running too.

His wife Jo did the Great North Run and is thinking of tackling a triathlon. His six-year-old daughter Brooke cycled alongside him when he was training.

“I’ll definitely carry on running,” said Mark, a housing employment co-ordinator for housing provider Bernicia in Wansbeck.

“It gives you lots of energy. The kids think it’s great.

“It’s been one of the best things I’ve done, and raising money for charity is a bonus.

“The only downside is that my allotment got neglected. It’s a mess.”

Anyone wanting to add to Mark’s total can do so at