A builder's merchants manager is raising money for Oswestry's Orthopaedic Hospital by running this year's London Marathon.

A staircase is so much more than just a means of getting from A to B – it can offer a great way of getting fit too, as Andy Griffiths, purchasing manager at builders’ merchants Boys & Boden in Welshpool, has discovered.

Studies have shown that climbing eight flights of stairs a day can boost strength and fitness levels dramatically – so Andy, who is training for this year’s London Marathon, has been making good use of staircases created by subsidiary company Pear Stairs.

As a marathon newbie, Andy has embraced a strict training regime with the zeal of the newly converted. Nobly giving up beer and curries for the duration, last month alone he notched up 101 miles pounding the streets, and swam more than five miles. His proudest achievement so far has been a bone-shaking 72-mile cycle ride.

Andy will be running to raise funds for the internationally renowned Robert Jones & Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital in Oswestry, on the Shropshire / Welsh border.

He said: “I've never run a marathon before so to add to this challenge, I'm aiming to run it in under four hours. This is going to be a huge effort from me, not only on race day but from now and the months leading up to the big day.

“Early morning runs in the rain and cold throughout the winter will be the hardest part. Spare a thought for me on a Saturday night whilst enjoying a few beers or a bottle of wine, I'll be sober ready for a long run on a Sunday morning!”

He added: “All donations will go towards the hospital and to help fund research and new treatments, providing state of the art facilities as well as extra comfort for all patients.”

Visit Andy’s JustGiving page to find out more by visiting www.justgiving.com and search for Andy Griffiths.