Tesco Bags of Help

Brandon Fern Hoppers has applied for funding from the Tesco ‘Bags of Help’ scheme and would like to explain to the local community the reasons behind that application and how we would use the funding if successful.

At the same time we hope to generate more interest in the club and encourage anyone from the local community to join us for a run! Our club has been active in the local community since 1989 providing residents with the opportunity to run in a safe, friendly environment up to three times a week, usually in the wonderful forest environment around Brandon.

The club has always encouraged runners of all abilities and focused strongly on each individual’s improvement rather than competitive running.

With a membership of just over forty there is always someone to run with at a pace to suit most.Over the years the Fern Hoppers have hosted many running events including over twenty editions of the popular Wibbly Wobbly Log Jog: a 5 mile forest run regularly attended by over 300 runners.

2019 will be our 30th anniversary and we would like to mark this occasion by extending an invitation to the local community to improve their fitness through running, either by joining us on a club run or by participating in one of our events. To help us to provide this opportunity we would like to improve the club’s training, event and safety equipment. The club would like to upgrade its equipment, to better promote the club and its inclusive approach to running.Currently the club lacks its own timing equipment and would like to ensure safety equipment is on hand for its free club runs.

By improving club facilities we hope to encourage the local community to engage in free physical fitness and improve their health and wellbeing.

Runners such as Alan, a local Fireman who found it hard to motivate himself to run on his own and so came along to run with the club “the thought of running 10k let alone a marathon was far from my mind.” he said “But in 2018 I ran the London Marathon in a time of 5hrs 6mins, the club supported me all the way and even cheered me on on the day!”

One of the more senior members only joined eighteen months ago, Christine felt inspired to take up jogging again at the age of 70, “I have received so much help and support from the club, although I am their slowest runner, I never feel ‘out of place’ or unwelcome.”

Then there is local Head Teacher Julian who was 53 and by his own admission overweight, he’s now 56 and has shed 3 stone! He finds the friendship and support it gives him, and others who want to run, is immense. “The club supports people of all ages and abilities and uses the natural beauty of the forests near Brandon in which to run. I know I can turn up and run at any pace or distance and find people to support me and run with me.”

The club has been selected for Tesco ‘Bags of Help’ scheme to help buy training and safety equipment to support more runners like Alan, Christine and Julian. We hope you’ll support our appeal by putting your tokens in Brandon Fern Hoppers box at Tesco’s in Brandon.

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