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Reporters raise hundreds after Great North Run

Hundreds of pounds are being collected by local press reporters after completing the Great North Run.

The famous half-marathon event from Newcastle to South Shields attracted 52,000 runners from across the UK and beyond including a bunch of press hacks turned athletes.

Darlington-based daily The Northern Echo had a five-strong team on the starting line including reporter Philippa Weighell.

Philippa ran for Cancer Research UK and was inspired by her colleague Jill Neill who also raised funds for cancers charities.

Jill sadly died on Monday after battling ovarian cancer for nearly two years.

  • Northern Echo reporters David Roberts and Philippa Weighell with Tony Blair before the run
  • Joining Philippa were photographer Chris Booth and reporters Paul Cook, Rachel Wearmouth and David Roberts, finishing his third Great North Run.

    David said: “It got off to a good start when I and other runners who were supporting the Tony Blair Sports Foundation went to breakfast in Newcastle.

    “The surprise guest was the man himself who came and chatted with us all.

    “I finished the race tired, but content, and not in the least bit ashamed that the person who finished ahead of me was wearing a Hawaiian hula skirt and fake breasts.”

    David has so far collected over £540 for the Tony Blair Sports Foundation.

    Trinity Mirror also had a strong showing in this year’s race with the Southport Visiter’s Laura Jones, David Old from Newcastle’s Evening Chronicle and Carrie Catterall from the Wirral News also finishing the 13.1-mile distance.

    Carrie, left, is raising cash for north-west charity Childflight which grants wishes to sick children.

    The 25-year-old said: “The run was absolutely amazing. The emotion was overwhelming when I crossed the finish line and I had to hold back the tears.

    “I was really happy with my time of two hours and 19 minutes but I felt it in my legs the next day.”

    Laura Jones, 25, completed the course in 2hrs 28mins and has raised over £260 for Get Kids Going – a charity which helps disabled under-26s take part in sport.

    David Old was running for the Born Free Foundation which aims to preserve international wildlife and finished in 2hrs 7mins.