Over 600 runners, supported by hundreds of spectators, took part in Haslemere’s annual fundraising festive run on Boxing Day, raising what is expected to be a record amount of money for Holy Cross Hospital.
The charity Boxing Day Run is a 3.5 mile run that begins at the Devil’s Punchbowl Hotel and takes a scenic route through the Devil’s Punchbowl before the finishing line at the National Trust cafe. Local resident Matt Dellar gives up his time each year to organise the event, which provides funds for Haslemere’s charitable hospital, Holy Cross.
One of the runners was Christopher Hinton, Chief Executive Officer of Holy Cross Hospital: “The run was a marvellous way to spend Boxing Day. On behalf of my fellow runners, I’d like to thank everyone who cheered us on, Matt Dellar who so kindly organises the run and the sponsors who help Matt put on such a great event. Wilson Electrical Distributors Limited was the main sponsor and generously supported the event this year. They were ably supported by Keats Estate Agents, Hogs Back Brewery, Sports Locker, London Road Physiotherapy, Haslemere Travel, the National Trust for allowing the use of the land, The Devil’s Punchbowl Hotel plus kind support from Show Hire Ltd.
“Having sponsors on board means as much of the money raised as possible comes to the hospital to help our patients. We are planning to use the money from this year’s run to help us to purchase newly developed equipment to help therapists provide better-informed, more effective treatment.”
Participants had the choice of the standard run or the drinking run where a pint of ale was served at mile two. Despite the fun nature of the event, there was healthy competition for first place. David Taylor was the fastest man of the standard run with a time of 22 minutes and 26 seconds and Helen Barran was the winner of the ladies’ race with a time of 27 minute and three seconds. The drinking race was won by Daniel Allaway (24 minutes and 30 seconds) and Sarah Hill (24 minutes and 47 seconds). The Drinking Team Cup Winners were Sarah Hill, James Clarke, Mark Maxwell and Neil Ambrose from Farnham Runners.
“Our participants and the fantastic spectators who cheered them on absolutely embraced the spirit of the Boxing Day Run. It’s all about enjoying our stunning countryside and sharing the experience with other people while raising money for an amazing hospital,” says organiser Matt Dellar.
Mr Hinton explained how the Boxing Day Run supports the hospital: “It means a huge amount to us at Holy Cross Hospital to have support from our local community. Delivering highly specialist medical care to our patients – all of whom have complex and very serious conditions – is only part of what Holy Cross is about; providing a homely and welcoming environment for patients and their loved ones is just as important.”