Preparing for the Navan marathon (from left) Jackie and Paul Disney, the Joshua Drop-in Centre; Aoife McGrath, Claremont Stadium; Cllr Alan Lawes, organiser; Amy Laws, Event Promotion and Bernard Kenny, Core Ireland.

Cllr spearheading marathon fundraiser for local charities

A HIGHLY unusual fundraising marathon event will take place in Navan at the end of August.

The entire 42.195 km or 26.5 miles will be run on the track at Claremont stadium - around 105 laps.

The event is being organised by Cllr Alan Lawes and his daughter Amy Lawes to raise funds for two local Navan charities - The Joshua Drop-in Centre and Core Ireland.

The event which takes place on 31st August is limited to 100 runners and each participant is asked to try and raise €100 in sponsorship, although it is hoped some will raise a lot more than that.

Cllr Lawes plans to run the marathon and Amy is also hoping to participate although a recent injury has put that in doubt.

"I had thought of running the Dublin City Marathon, but they have a list of charities you can raise funds for and I wanted to raise funds for the local charities," Alan explains.

"Organising a marathon on the road is a huge organisational task, so we came up with the idea of having it on the track. The added bonus is that it will be easier on the softer surface of the track. I'd like to thank Aoife McGrath from Claremont Stadium for allowing us to use the track.

It won't be Alan's first marathon. "I have run four marathons, but the first was when I was 40 and I’m now 61. I have run the Dublin City Marathon, the Berlin marathon twice and I once ran in a fundraiser from Navan to Cappagh Hospital. It is 18 years since I last ran a marathon."

His daughter, Amy, who is a food scientist, will be posting nutritional advice on the new Facebook event page, 'Navan Marathon'. Amy has been training for the marathon too, but is injured at the moment and it is uncertain whether she will be able to train again in time to prepared for the marathon.

The event starts at 9am on 31st August and runners can download a free app for their phones and smart watches, where they can see their time and distance run.

"It is a fun event and we are looking for local bands to provide music on the day. We are also looking for companies to come forward with sponsorship."

The Joshua Drop-In Centre on Kennedy Road offers those who need it a space to shower, charge phones and avail of tea and coffee, sandwiches and other refreshments.

Core Ireland is a community-driven mental health charity, offering free adult mental health recovery education as well as an outreach programme and food bank services.