CIRENCESTER College’s Head of Science, Liam Nolan has just completed a massive personal challenge of cycling an incredible 1,000 miles and running 260 miles, all in one month to raise much needed funds for Children’s Hospice South West, a place which is very close to Liam’s heart.
Liam’s fund raising is inspired by his daugher, Laoise, aged 7, who has Leukaemia. Liam said: “The Children’s Hospice South West is an amazing charity which provides respite care for families with children with life limiting conditions. Staff at the CHSW are dedicated to improving the lives of families who encounter huge practical and emotional trauma when caring for very poorly children. We have made great friends at the Hospice and have received invaluable support during some very difficult times.”
Liam who has had to follow a punishing schedule to fit round his busy College life, of running a science department and a thriving STEM Group, has been making 5 o’clock starts each weekday and completing even bigger challenges at the weekends.
The final challenge of the month was a 150 mile Coast to Coast bike ride, from Seascale to Whitby through the Lake District and the Yorkshire Dales and Moors. Liam rode the event with cyclists from Chalford, one of whom, Chris Dickin, has already raised over ￡3,000 for the Hospice in a ride from Carlisle to Chalford.
Liam has been supported by staff and residents from his home in Chalford. Liam has many people to thank including the Ballyhoo Dance & Theatre Group who did a production of ‘Alice in Blunderland’ at the Bingham Hall in Cirencester which had a bucket collection for the Hospice, which raised over ￡300. Laoise herself performed as a flower fairy in the performance, which was a huge success.
Other local people have also been inspired by Laoise’s story. ‘The Hair Group’ (previously ‘JJ’s’) of Cirencester, have raised over ￡1,200 in sponsored activities, including a walk from Cirencester to Swindon and a cycle ride back again, cake baking, and a sponsored silence. Owner Elaine Bisset says: “Raising money for such an inspirational charity is very rewarding, but it’s also been great for the team who work at the salon, so it’s been a very positive experience for everyone.”.
In another huge community effort, a group of families from Laoise’s school organised a craft sale day which raised ￡600 for CHSW. The collective of creative mums sewed, baked and crocheted products which were sold while the dads and children ran stalls and competitions on the day.
Liam’s brother Tom is also fundraising and and challenged himself to enter three full marathons and two half marathons during June. The brothers joined forces for the Cheltenham Circular Challenge, a trail marathon and half marathon on June 22, along with another trail event over the Yorkshire Moors.
Contributions to the fundraising effort, which aims to raise ￡10,000 would be very welcome at the Virgin Money Giving page: http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/laoisenolan. For futher information, please contact Liam at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow Liam on Twitter @liamnolans