The story

Running enthusiast Alan Ladd from Mallusk has set himself one heck of a challenge in memory of his mother who passed away in August 2014. In 2011, Catherine was diagnosed with advanced breast cancer. She had months of treatment and it was thought the cancer had gone away. However, in 2013 it returned, this time incurable. She passed away in August 2014 aged 59. Catherine was a member of Abbey Runners running club in Leeds, and got Alan into running aged 19 by doing the Belfast Marathon with him in 2003. She completed 5 marathons, Paris, Perpignan, Lake Vyrnwy (Wales) and Belfast twice with a PB of 4.18. Alan and his wife Louise took part in the very first parkrun in Northern Ireland at Waterworks Belfast after being alerted by his mum that parkrun was starting up here in 2010.

On Saturday 24th June, Alan, his brother Jonny and a team of 7 of his running clubmates from Mallusk Harriers will tackle all 24 of Northern Ireland’s 5k parkrun routes in 24 hours. Starting at Derry City at 9.30am, the team will work their way North, East, South and West of the country, all being well, concluding by 9.30am on Sunday 25th June at Lakeland Forum, Enniskillen. The total distance will be close to 80 miles and is the equivalent of 3 marathons. The driving distance of around 350 miles is expected to take nearly half of the allotted time.

’24 in 24′ was inspired by Eddie Izzard’s unbelievable 27 marathons in 27 days. The start-stop nature of the running will pose the guys a massive challenge, making it much harder than a straight 80 mile run. Logistically, the runners are indebted to volunteers from Mallusk Harriers who will ferry the team about on the day and through the night.

You can support Alan in his quest of raising £10,000 through this challenge by sponsoring him at his BT MyDonate pageBT MyDonate gives the most money back to the charity out of all the UK fundraising platforms!

Action Cancer is the only charity in the UK and Ireland to offer free breast screening to asymptomatic women aged 40 – 49 and over 70, those who fall outside the NHS screening age range (50 – 70). The free screening is on offer at Action Cancer House in Belfast and on board the charity’s Big Bus. “I wonder if my mum had detected her cancer at an earlier stage would this have made a difference to her cancer journey? This is why I am doing this challenge in aid of Action Cancer, to raise money to provide more women in the age category with a free breast screening.”