FOR most of us, running one marathon for charity would be
enough. But not for David Hall (above). The 50-year-old
chartered accountant has just set off on an even tougher
fund-raising challenge - 40 marathons in 40 days, running between
John o' Groats and Land's End.
Mr Hall will be taking with him a replica of a shack from the
Sierra Leone slum, for which he is fund-raising, to sleep in each
His plan was "completely crazy", he said, but "the support we
have had from churches has been fantastic. We have got
opportunities to speak at churches all over the route."
His run is in aid of Home Leone, a newly established charity
working to build permanent homes for people living in a slum in
Freetown, the capital of Sierra Leone. About £50,000 is currently
pledged, which, Mr Hall said, already exceeded his
Nigel Hyde, the founder of Home Leone and a friend of Mr Hall,
is hoping that donations to the "Man in a Shack" challenge will
total more than £200,000 by the time that Mr Hall reaches Land's
End in September. That would be enough to build up to 50 houses.
The land for construction in Freetown is already secured.
Mr Hall visited Sierra Leone in June, seeing an area which an EU
report concluded needed at least 230,000 new homes. "The situation
over there is desperate, and has been for some time," he said.
Although a veteran of 12 London Marathons, and more than 130 in
total over the past 15 years, Mr Hall said that he was worried
about the scale of his journey. "I'm very nervous about it, to be
honest - it's a massive challenge," he said. He is already
training, and runs for about 90 minutes daily.
He has no regrets, however, over committing to the 40 marathons.
"It's about time I moved on from competitive running, and this
challenge would be a wonderful way to use something I have had a
great deal of pleasure from for a good purpose."