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Leicester teen raises £3,000 for Rainbows from epic running challenge

A female runner in all black running with a dog

A Leicester teenager who completed an epic challenge of running 26 miles over 26 hours has raised more than £3,000 for Rainbows.

Lucy Cooke, 15, began her fundraiser on Friday 5 February. At 5pm, she ran her first mile. At 6pm, she ran her second mile. Lucy continued to run one mile on the hour, every hour, until 6pm on Saturday 6 February.

With a modest target of £260, Lucy smashed her fundraising and her total now stands at £3,072.

Lucy, a pupil at Leicester Grammar School, said: “I would go out on the hour and run a mile and then I would come home and rest for around 40 minutes. Early on in the night, I was productive with my rest time and would make bread or play games, but throughout the night, I would use that time to have a quick sleep.

“Because I ran through the night, it got really cold in the early hours and that was hard as I would warm up and then cool down again so it was difficult not to be cold. When I finished, I slept for 12 hours straight.”

Lucy’s dad, Steve, also took on the challenge with her but had to rest from mile 11 as he hurt his foot. “We were there to support her,” said Steve. “When she finished she was a very tired looking girl. We were amazed by the sponsorship, it is quite overwhelming when people are so generous and supportive, it must have really struck a chord with people.”

Lucy’s sister Milly (24) and her friend Steph, who live in London, also did the challenge at the same time to support Lucy.

Lucy added: “When I thought about doing the challenge and thought about charity, it was easy to decide on Rainbows. I know someone who had end of life care at Rainbows and they were so supportive of him and his family. It is such a worthwhile charity. 

“I have raised so much more than I thought and I would like to thank everyone for their donations and generosity.”

Jenny Perry, Rainbows Community Fundraiser, added: “Lucy has taken on such an amazing challenge and she has shown such strength and determination to complete it. What she has done for Rainbows is incredible as we rely on people like Lucy to fund our vital work. We thank her from the bottom of our hearts.”

To support Lucy’s fundraising, visit www.justgiving.com/fundraising/Lucy-Cooke11