Up to 900 runners are set to tackle five miles through the grounds of Blenheim Palace in support of the Oxford Children’s Hospital.
Runners aged 10 to 80 from Oxfordshire and the surrounding counties will be taking part, on Sunday, many in fancy dress.
The teams include doctors and nurses from the hospitals, parents who have children treated there and businesses from across the region.
The fun run, which is in its 22nd year, is sponsored by Oxfordshire recruitment agency, Allen Associates who have supported the local fundraiser for over a decade.
This year the official starter who will sound the horn to get the runners started is seven-year-old Kaiden Edwards, who is recovering from a brain tumour.
His mum Kathryn has gathered a huge team to run with her, and they have already raised over £3,000 in sponsorship.
She said: "Being in the Oxford Children’s Hospital makes you realise the amazing work the doctors and nurses do, it blows you away. We decided to do something for the hospital and the run seemed like a great opportunity for our loved ones to be able to show their support.”
Another large team taking part is Jacob’s Journey, running for the 10th consecutive year in memory of their little boy. Jacob Finnegan passed away in 2014 after being diagnosed with a serious heart condition.
Jacob’s aunty, Gemma Finnegan, remembers the first time they ran at the event, just weeks after Jacob died. She said: "We were all distraught to lose Jacob, but decided we would still run as a tribute to him and a thank you to the amazing team that cared for him during his short life."
Lots of hospital staff are also taking part, including a team of Play Specialists, Paediatric Intensive Care, the Oxford Vaccine Group, Haematogy and microbiology staff.
Nana Amoasi, who works as a Physician Associate in the Ambulatory Assessment Unit at the John Radcliffe is one of Sunday’s runners.
Nana and her team have raised over £1,000 for the event. She said: “I can’t wait to run on Sunday and it's been a humbling experience getting ready to take part and I can’t wait to see everyone there on the day running for the Oxford Children’s Hospital.”
Gail Williams from Oxford Hospitals Charity is organising the event and said: “We are thrilled to be back at Blenheim and have so many people joining us to show their support for the children’s hospital and children’s departments across our NHS Trust.
“This is such a special event with a long and important history. It means so much to see staff, parents and local people join us every year at Blenheim and thanks to them we are able to make a real difference to our young patients.
“We would like to remind all our runners that the clocks go forward this weekend and also running numbers and timing chips need to be collected on the morning of the run.”
The OX5 Run annual fun run raises money for the Oxford Children’s Hospital and children’s services across the whole of Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which cares thousands of youngsters from around the region and beyond each year.
It is hoped the 2023 event will raise over £80,000.
To sign up or get all the on the day information please visit www.hospitalcharity.co.uk/ox5run
This story was written by Andy Ffrench, he joined the team more than 20 years ago and now covers community news across Oxfordshire.
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