Congratulations to our VLM 2014 Marathon runners!
30 APR 2014

We would like to say a massive well done and congratulations to our four Virgin London Marathon runners who all successfully completed the challenge!

Taking on a marathon to raise funds is a massive commitment, not only in terms of the time it takes to train, but several of our runners also took it upon themselves to organise their own fundraising events such as work cake sales, to ensure they could raise as much money as possible.

All 4 runners smashed their fundraising targets and we are very grateful to them for their support, and also to their friends, families and colleagues as well as anyone else who sponsored them.

Here they share their thoughts on the experience:

Jonty Mountford, 29 from Shifnal in Shropshire works for Lafarge Tarmac as an Account Manager in the West Midlands. He describes himself as a very keen sportsman but is fairly new to running after only really running to keep fit for his main hobby which is Cricket. He has wanted to run the London Marathon for 4 years.

He said of St Basils:

“I became aware of St Basils and the great work they do after I met one of their Fundraising Officers at a conference in Birmingham at Edgbaston Cricket Ground in 2013 and I was then lucky enough to be chosen”

After the marathon Jonty said:

“What an amazing day and experience, I have to thank everyone at St Basils for gifting me this opportunity as it is something that I will never forget.

The whole build up from when I started training just before Christmas up until the day has been great, so many memories and pains to go with it but overall a great success and sense of achievement.

I did 3.35.21 which I was very happy with, my target was 3.30 but I had a great run and was able to finish strong and enjoy every moment of it, the atmosphere from the crowd and the other runners was amazing and you truly do get pulled along after 20 miles.

I have raised £2,419.27 so far with still more to collect so the final total will be over the £2.5k.

I certainly now have the bug and will be looking to do it again next year:) ”


Lyn O’Carroll, 40, lives and works in Solihull. She has completed 3 half marathons before but has always wanted to run a marathon and felt her 40th year would be a good year to achieve this goal. 

On the work of St Basils she said:

“A good friend of mine ran the London Marathon for St Basils charity last year so I was aware of the amazing work that St Basils carry out in the local areas to support young homeless people.”

On the Marathon itself Lyn said:

“Running the London Marathon was what I expected and so much more. The support of the spectators was totally unreal and they kept you going all the way.

I got round in 6hrs 15m 26s and it was a great feeling crossing the finish line. Unfortunately the many toilet breaks and queues at Porto Loos slowed me down. The last five miles were my favourite and I managed to find some extra energy from somewhere.

I have enjoyed raising money for St Bails with various events and would like to give a massive thank you for my family, friends and colleagues for their amazing donations. With their generous support I have managed to raise the grand total of £1,100 which I hope will continue to help many young people beat homelessness with the support of St Basils”.

Tony Willsher, 49, grew up in Chelmsford Essex
but currently lives in Upminster with his wife, kids and new baby son Louis who was born in March 2014. This was his 9th marathon and his 4th London Marathon.

He said of St Basils:

“I'm running for St Basils as I really like the work they do and I felt that in the company I now work for I could raise some worthwhile funds."

After the event Tony said:

“Well I am happy to say I completed the race!! It wasn’t a good day at the office for me but running injured and with less than adequate training I knew I would be slower than usual! It hasn't put me of running and I hope to get properly fit and do another as after all......My best time is yet to be run......!”.

I’ve raised £1635 and I’m still hoping to raise more so we’ll see.

“As always the day was great, the atmosphere and organisation are just about the best in the world! The support was fantastic and I love the camaraderie! So thank you for allowing me to run for you! “

James Stevens from Solihull, works for PwC as a Chartered Accountant. He describes himself as a BIG West Brom fan, into football, food and the gym. He has always wanted to run a marathon as he feels it is one of the most challenging things a human being can put themselves through.

On his reasons for running for St Basils, he said:

“I wanted to do the London Marathon firstly to raise money for a great cause - in particular St Basils, a charity I had come to know of through the 'Birmingham BOLT' athletics competition.

I have had what I would call a relatively privileged upbringing - it has not always been easy but I have always had the family backing to have a roof over my head and food on the table. This isn't the case for some people and I wanted to run for a charity that does something for our local young people & a charity where the money goes directly to fighting this problem”.

After the marathon James said:

“I had a fantastic time on the day of the London Marathon and I was proud to represent a local charity. I'm chuffed to bits with my time of 3 hours 20 minutes and more importantly over the moon that I have beaten my fundraising target to reach a total of around £1600 for St Basils”.

If you would like to take part in next year’s London Marathon and think you can raise at least £1000 to help homeless young people please email and your name will be entered into our draw.