Marathon man raises money for Rotherham schoolPublished Thursday, 15th September 2016
Go-getting grandad raises funds for Rotherham School.
An intrepid 75 year old Rotherham man has taken up the impressive challenge of 75 consecutive marathons to raise funds for a community special school in the South Yorkshire town.
Go-getting grandad Ray Matthews has now completed his 75 marathons with the aim to raise £75,000 for Newman School in Rotherham after being inspired by the children and staff at the school.
Newman School in Whiston, Rotherham, is a community special school which offers a specialist range of provision to support children and young people with physical disabilities, medical needs and complex learning needs. Ray is running the marathon to provide the school with new outdoor interactive and educational equipment for the children.
Ray has run throughout South Yorkshire and Nottinghamshire, as well as completing two marathons in France including in Rotherham’s twin town, St Quentin in France. He ended his 75 marathon at Newman School, welcomed by dozens of children who have been following his progress since day one.
Julie Mott, Headteacher at Newman School in Whiston said: “We are delighted that Ray has chosen to fundraise for our school, the money raised will go such a long way here. The children and staff are honoured that he has gone to such lengths to help us provide an environment which suits the needs of our pupils who have a range of physical disabilities, medical needs and complex learning needs.
“The school’s outdoor facilities are satisfactory, but this money will provide us with an opportunity to give the children and young people a real chance to play like many other children do in a standard playground, with a variety of equipment that is appropriate for their needs.
“Hopefully with the funds we will be able to provide wheelchair swings and roundabouts, climbing frames and even a decorated path into our woodland at the front of the school which we can use to teach pupils about the environment and wildlife as part of their curriculum.”
On finishing his 75th Marathon, Ray said: "It has been tough at times to do 75 marathons in 75 days, but I've done what I said I'd do.
“I don’t actually want it to be over, but what I can continue to do is keep encouraging people to donate and help me reach my £75,0000 target to give the children and young people equipment they can enjoy.”
Cllr Taiba Yasseen, Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods and Cultural Services joined the school in welcoming him onto the field for his last run. She said: “I am in awe of Ray’s achievement and seeing him finish his 75th marathon welcomed by dozens of people really hit home that his efforts are not only having a positive effect on school pupils but he’s also been able to bring communities together across the borough. He’s an inspiration.”
The grand total of Ray’s fundraising efforts will be announced in due course, you can follow his news and donate online.