AN ELLESMERE woman who has inspired a 10K running event for Nightingale House says she was spurred on by the memory of her friend who died at the hospice.

Gemma Bloomfield, from Ellesmere, and friend Angie Prichard, of Wrexham, are the inspiration behind Your 10k Run 2020, in memory of her friend Joannah Houghton, aiming to help the Wrexham-based hospice raise funds in the absence of the cancelled Erddig 10K.

The annual event did not take place in the spring because of Covid-19 restrictions on fundraising events but did supporters are undeterred for this weekend, who are pulling out all the stops and running their own version this weekend.

And for Gemma, the inspiration for Your 10k Run 2020 came from their friend who sadly passed away at the hospice in April.

“I decided to run the Erddig 10k virtually after my friend Angie suggested it,” said Gemma.

“We were both disappointed when we found out the run had to be postponed due to Covid restrictions. This was Angie’s first 10k distance and she did amazing and I’m so proud of her.

“It was an emotional run as we signed up on behalf of our friend Joannah. Jo wanted to take part and give something back to Nightingale House as she was fighting cervical cancer and was being supported by the hospice.

“Jo wasn’t able to take part so we signed up on her behalf, creating Team Joannah Houghton. Jo was looking forward to cheering us all on but sadly that wasn’t meant to be as on April 20, Jo passed away at the hospice.”

So far the group of friends have raised £473 of their £500 target.

Gemma added: “I think it’s great that the hospice have created the opportunity for others to do a virtual 10k.

“I’m hoping to cover this distance again over the weekend in an aim to reach our target in memory of Jo and raise vital funds for those with life-limiting illnesses at Nightingale House.”

Sam Amis, fundraising events co-ordinator at Nightingale House Hospice said: “It is lovely we are able to continue to provide the care needed to our patients like Jo.

“Gemma, Angie and their friends have seen the work and support that the hospice provides and wanted to do what they could to help the hospice during these difficult times.

“Without the support from people in the community like Gemma we really would not be able to carry on delivering the services that we do. It’s very much a team effort.

"We look forward to the day we can all be together again at our fundraising events but until then we will be united virtually. Well done Team Joannah Houghton.”

There is still time to sign up for your own 10k Run 2020 this weekend, or if you are interested in helping us raise funds during the last three months of 2020 then please get in touch with the fundraising events team on 01978 316800.