Born and bred in St Austell, Gareth has always loved sport and golf in particular. His Dad signed him up as a member of St Austell Golf Club when he was born and he started lessons at the tender age of 3. “Running came much later when I decided to enter the Sticker 5 mile event in 2011. It was much harder than I thought it would be and after taking part in the 2012 run I joined St Austell Running Club.”

Gareth quickly became hooked on running and now coaches others but the London Marathon has only ever been an event he’s watched. “I’ve done eleven half marathons but I really wanted to take on the London Marathon to mark my 30th birthday, which was last November. I applied for one of the Gold Bond places being offered by Cornwall Hospice Care in memory of my Aunty Susan who died of cancer last year. It’ll be the first anniversary of her funeral in April so it seems appropriate to take this challenge now. She was very caring and always good fun to be around. She was a lecturer at St Austell College and my Dad’s sister, the eldest of six children, so she pretty much helped bring all her brothers and sisters up. I think she would be pleased that I’m doing this for her. I’ll also be thinking of my cousin, Hayley who died of cancer when still a teenager.”

Gareth hopes to complete the marathon in under four hours and says his training is going well. “I’m sure I’ll be at peak fitness so I’m looking forward to enjoying the atmosphere from a runner’s point of view, rather than someone in the crowd.”

Gareth has been with the St Austell Voice newspaper for ten years, reporting on a range of activities, having spent a year at university in Leeds studying sports journalism. A former pupil of Carclaze Primary and Poltair Schools, he also attended St Austell College.  

Gareth says his fundraising activities for the charity have been made easier by the support he’s received from his entire family. “Everyone’s helping me and I can’t thank them enough. Last Friday we held a golf competition at the club. 112 people took part and we raised more than £4,000!”

Oliver Hoare is Head of Fundraising at Cornwall hospice Care. “I think Gareth has done a tremendous job raising vital funds for Cornwall Hospice Care. Not only has he achieved a fantastic and successful Golf Day, but he’s also training hard at the same time and getting close to regular 20 mile runs. His support and drive to fund our Cornish charity is admirable and I look forward to his success at London Marathon in two months’ time. Thank you and good luck.”

To support Gareth’s London marathon challenge for Cornwall Hospice Care, visit his fundraising page at https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/garethrowett1