NHS team to take on epic relay race

Kelly Thornham News

An intrepid team of runners from around the NHS are preparing to take on the gruelling Endure24 relay race to raise money for Bradford Hospitals’ Charity.

Endure24, to be held at Bramham Park, Leeds, from 2 to 4 July, is widely known as the Glastonbury of running. It’s billed as epic, brutal and relentless, with each member taking turns to run 5 mile circuits of the country estate for the full 24 hours.

From NHS doctors to directors, hobby joggers to ultra-marathon runners – the team represents every corner of the NHS and a range of running abilities.

Mohammed Hussain, a pharmacist by profession, who works for NHS Digital and is Non-Executive Director at Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, is a self-professed hobby jogger and team captain. He said: “For us, we’re not taking part to win; we want to work as a team to say thank to you the NHS, raise awareness and raise money for Bradford Hospitals’ Charity.

“We want to show our NHS colleagues that when the clapping stopped, the support didn’t”

The rest of the team is as follows:

  • Dr Tom Lawton MBE, Critical Care Doctor at Bradford Teaching Hospitals. He is a triathlete and was awarded an MBE for his services to the NHS after being at the forefront of the fight against Covid-19, both as a medic and researcher.
  • Catherine Strong, Rheumatology Nurse Specialist at Bradford Teaching Hospitals. Catherine is currently training for her second marathon.
  • Aubrey Sitch, Programme Manager at Bradford Teaching Hospitals and manager of Scan4Safety.
  • John Holden, Director of Strategy at Bradford Teaching Hospitals, runs in his spare time. He joked: “I try to avoid too much physical exertion. On the plus side I will make the rest of them look fast.”
  • Ritchie Williamson is Director of Research at the School of Pharmacy in Bradford. He is a neuroscientist by training and dementia researcher at heart. He took up running in 2014 and is now an ultra-runner.
  • Rebecca Heading is a pharmacy technician and ultra-runner. She recently ran 50 miles around Lake Windermere. She describes herself as a “professional juggler, mother to many, spy for NHS England, wannabe triathlete & ultra-runner in whatever spare time I can steal.” She added: “I’m so excited to be raising money for this excellent charity and doing it with some awesome people.”
  • Hawarun Hussain is a former Bradford District councillor and now works for the NHS Clinical Commissioning Group. She is a keen cyclist.

Mohammed added: “We’re all training hard for the event. We’ve already surpassed our original target of £2,000 and now hoping to reach £4,000, so any donations are very gratefully received.”

Hayley Collis, Head of Fundraising for Bradford Hospitals’ Charity, said: “Although it’s 15 months since the start of the pandemic, our NHS Hospital Heroes emergency appeal remains very much open and we are continuing in earnest to support our staff at Bradford Teaching Hospitals. There’s still so much we want to do.

“Of all the items and services funded by our charity, we are particularly proud to have supported the 32 new wellbeing rooms (affectionately named wobble rooms) which are now established across our Trust. We have funded furniture, soft furnishings and appliances to give colleagues a quiet place to rest and reflect. We are now looking at plans to create outdoor spaces for staff.”

Please donate via the team’s Just Giving page: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/teamendure24

You can follow the team’s progress via Mohammed’s Twitter account: https://twitter.com/DigitalPhamcist

For more information about Bradford Hospitals’ Charity – the official NHS charity of Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust – and how it supports patients and staff, please visit https://bradfordhospitalscharity.org/.

If you would like to raise money, donate or volunteer for Bradford Hospitals’ Charity, call 01274 274809 or email charity@bthft.nhs.uk

Ritchie Williamson, Hawarun Saunders and Mohammed Hussain