Katie Shipley

Staffordshire Wildlife Trust’s Stoke Wildplay Officer Katie Shipley is to take on the challenge of a lifetime in April by running the London Marathon.

The 32-year-old, from Loggerheads, is looking to raise funds for the Trust by tackling the grueling 26-mile and 385 yard marathon on Sunday 23rd April.

Katie, who has been training for the challenge for the past seven months, says she is keen to raise as much money for the Trust is possible to support the work of the charity across the county. She said: “The Trust helps to protect wildlife and wild spaces in Staffordshire, and is reliant on support from members of the public. So, raising as much money as possible is my aim and hopefully provide a real boost to the charity.

“I completed my first half-marathon in November and have been ramping up the intensity of my training slowly since then. It’s the big push now to get myself marathon ready. “Everyone who has sponsored me gives me an extra boost to achieve the goal of completing the marathon.”

Katie was overwhelmed with support when she ran 20 laps of Westport Lake as part of her training in early March. She is based at the Trust’s Westport Lake Visitor Centre. She added: “It was great to hear so many words of encouragement when I was doing the 20 laps. To receive any type of support gives you a real boost.

“I’ve been told from people who have completed the marathon in the past that the atmosphere on the day is fantastic and people really spur you on to the finishing line. “I think I’ll need that. I think you can do all the training in the world – but you also need encouraging words to get you through to the end.”

Anyone who wishes to sponsor Katie can do so at http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/KatieShipley