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GSF Car Parts’ long-serving Poole Branch Manager Paul Snook has been stepping up his training ahead of the London Marathon on 23rd April, after opting to enter the gruelling race to raise funds for the Prostate Cancer Research Centre.

Paul started running just three years ago but has quickly progressed from fun runs, up to 5 km, then 10 km and even half marathons. The London Marathon he readily admits will be the ‘ultimate challenge’.

Explaining his motivation for race Paul said: “15 years ago, I lost my Mum and have recently lost my Aunt, both to cancer. It’s a disease that has greatly affected my family.

“Prostate cancer is one of the less publicised but can be one of the most aggressive forms and it’s affected my father. He is very fortunate in that he has been able to survive this but there are many men that continue to fight this disease, supported by the fantastic work that they do at the Prostate Cancer Research Centre.”

Prostate cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer in men, with 40,000 new cases each year in the UK. Men over 50 have a 1 in 8 chance of developing prostate cancer and the risk of developing the cancer, caused by random genetic changes, rises with age.

Anyone wishing to support Paul can make a donation at


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Chris Fraser, a mechanic at West High Street Garage in Inverurie will be running in the forthcoming 2017 London Marathon to raise funds for the MS (Multiple sclerosis) Society.

Chris Fraser.

Both Chris and garage owner, Tom McPhee have close family members who are affected by MS. Chris commented: “For the last 12 years I have been working at the garage, Tom’s wife Aileen has suffered with this terrible disease during this time. I have witnessed first-hand the stress and tension this illness can cause within a family. Even closer to home, since I secured my place on the marathon, my daughters’ mother has also been diagnosed with MS.

“I can’t imagine a more worthy cause and believe the marathon is the best way to help those affected. The London Marathon is the sort of race you may only do once in your life, so if indeed it is a once in a lifetime opportunity, it makes sense to do it for a great cause and raise money along the way.”

Chris’s journey began about 18 months ago when he started running for general recreation and exercise. Running for a club near his home called Keith and District AAC, he missed out on the available public ballot position for the London Marathon but later managed to secure a ballot spot with the club.

With his training well under way, Chris knows this is the ultimate challenge: “I was very excited when I received the call with the good news I had a place. The next day, the reality of the task had sunk in quickly! As I have not run long-distance competitively, training has been significantly stepped up as I strive to be as fit as possible for the miles that lie ahead in April.

“I have also been taking part in some recreational races, completing a number of 5k and 10k races which has progressed to 10 miles and recently the half marathon. I will also do another couple of half marathons between now and the end of February, so there’s been a lot of training required to get to this stage whilst juggling busy days in the garage – it’s been hectic but good fun! Training on many levels can actually be quite addictive – the more you do, the more you want to keep doing.

“I have in the past been involved in motorsport racing where you would often find your equipment fell short against a competitor or on the day your car perhaps isn’t just right; with the running, you don’t have that – all you have is a pair of trainers and you are normally just against yourself and the clock.

“We’ve got a good group of guys at the running club in Keith. A few of them are also running the London Marathon so that has been a great form of encouragement as we all train a lot of the times together which plays a huge part in overall motivation for getting out and training. They are all like-minded so we all pull each other through. However, saying that, on the day having to comprehend running 26 miles; I’m not sure how that is going to feel! It’s a fair ask but I’m confident I’ll cross the finish line in a decent time.

“Between now and the London Marathon, we are planning on getting our runs during the weekend and get up to 24 miles; most folk recommend you don’t go up to the full 26 miles in your training to avoid burnout. If you can run 23/24 miles, you will do the full distance on the day.

“At my average pace, with the races I’ve done lately over a half marathon or a 10-mile race, I tend to run at 6.5 minutes per mile, but I think if I could keep it around 7.5 minutes in London I’ll be doing alright.

“The Just Giving page has done really well and we have been fortunate to have many local businesses come forward and help contribute towards my target. The team at the garage has been brilliantly supportive of me doing this, and our customers have also donated generously, too,” concluded Chris Fraser.

Between the garage in Inverurie and the second premises at Kintore, the team be giving away iPads as part of a raffle, as well as MoT’s and servicing. To enter the draw, all customers have to do its donate a minimum of £2 to the Just Giving page. which is a great incentive to get involved.

We would ask you please give generously to this fantastic cause – see the below link to Chris’s JustGiving page:


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startincinThe team at Startin Honda Stourbridge has got into the spirit of this year’s Children in Need fundraising, dressing as comic book characters in the showroom to raise much-needed funds for the well-known charity.

Children in Need currently supports around 2400 projects that are working with children in the UK who are facing a range of disadvantages; including poverty, deprivation, disabled young people, and children who have been the victims of abuse or neglect.

Alison Byers, Honda Sales Manager at Startin Group, commented: “We are over the moon to have joined forces with Children in Need to help raise funds for disadvantaged children in our local area, and across the UK. The whole team here has really got behind the planned activities, and we have enjoyed helping to spread the news about the fantastic work Children in Need is doing.”

Children in Need believes every child in the UK has a right to a childhood which is safe, happy and secure, and allows them to reach their potential. Since the first major Children in Need Appeal in 1980, the charity has raised over £840 million, all of which has gone to help disadvantaged children and young people across the UK.


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