Worthing couple gather team to run Littlehampton 10k for Chestnut Tree House children’s hospice in memory of stillborn son

Team Rudy, pictured at last year's Chestnut Tree House Littlehampton 10k, return for 2019 with a team of 27 runners
Team Rudy, pictured at last year's Chestnut Tree House Littlehampton 10k, return for 2019 with a team of 27 runners

A Worthing couple has put together a huge team of runners to support Chestnut Tree House children’s hospice in memory of their stillborn son Rudy.

Andy and Laura Heward were supported by the hospice when Rudy was stillborn at 39 weeks, meaning they were able to spend some special time with their son and say goodbye in their own way.

Andy said: “I remember the first time that I visited Chestnut Tree House, it’s not what I expected at all. It’s such a lovely atmosphere and they provide so much support.”

He and Laura have a team of 27 runners ready for the Chestnut Tree House Littlehampton 10k and 5k in memory of Rudy.

Andy said: “We are taking part in the Littlehampton 10k to say thank you. Chestnut Tree House helped me and my family in a difficult time. It costs a lot for them to provide the care and support that they do, so we’re completing this run and fundraising for Chestnut Tree House in Rudy’s memory.”

The 16th Littlehampton 10k will be bigger and better than previous years. To encourage both experienced and first-time runners to get involved, a new 5k route has been included for this year, when the event returns on Sunday, September 8, on Littlehampton seafront.

Both routes start at the event village in Banjo Road, where Littlehampton mayor Tracey Baker will start the race.

Everyone will follow the same route to start with, whether pushing for a personal best or having fun in fancy dress. At the East Beach Café, the runners will split, with those taking part in the 10k passing through residential Littlehampton, Rustington and Mewsbrook Park.

Last year, a record-breaking 1,461 people took part in the Littlehampton 10k and raised around £60,000.

Andrew Battley, challenge events fundraiser at Chestnut Tree House, said: “We are so excited and overwhelmed at the incredible interest in the 2019 Littlehampton 10k and 5k. We’re excited to see our regular supporters but, equally, meet many first-time runners who are taking on the challenge for us.

“Without our supporters and volunteers, who go above and beyond to fundraise for us, we wouldn’t be able to continue offering vital care to local life-limited children and their families. On behalf of everyone at Chestnut Tree House, I would like to say a huge thank you and good luck.”

Limited spaces are still available. Online entries close on Wednesday, September 4. Registration costs £18 per person for the 10k, minimum age 16, and £12 for the 5k, minimum age 14. Visit www.chestnut-tree-house.org.uk/10k to sign up.

If you want to be involved but are not running, Chestnut Tree House is looking for volunteers, as route marshals, car park wardens, handing out medals and much more. Contact Andrew or Emma on 01903 706355 or email events@chestnut-tree-house.org.uk for more information.