Knaresborough's Lenny gets ready for London Marathon in Â£2,000 charity bid
A Knaresborough dad-of-two is only Â£400 shy of his fundraising finishing line as he prepares to run the London Marathon this weekend.
Roger Lennon, better known locally as 'Lenny', will join thousands of other runners on the streets of London this Sunday (April 22), to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust.
Lenny has worked with the Teenage Cancer Trust for more than a year, but explained that the cause of the charity was close to his heart for another reason.
He said: "I have been a youth worker for many years and I now work for the Teenage Cancer Trust. I lost my mum to cancer in 2001 and ran the marathon in 2005 for a hospice which looked after her in my hometown.
"I've worked for the Teenage Cancer Trust for the last 18 months, going into schools raising awareness and things like that so I know the charity inside out now and they are brilliant."
Lenny is originally from Southport, but over the last eight years has become a well-known character in the community of Knaresborough.
Over the last few months, his friends and family have helped him raise Â£1,600, but Lenny is keen to hit the Â£2,000 mark.
He said: "At the minute my Virgin Money page is on about Â£1,600 and it's taken a lot of effort to get to this stage so it would be really nice to get that last boost."
But while he's not got far to go to cross the finishing line with his fundraising, Lenny has another 26 miles to run before he can say he has completed his marathon challenge.
He said: "I'm kind of taking it a little bit easier this week with the mindset that whatever else needs to be done I'm not going to achieve it in a week.
"I used to play lots of football, I do judo and mountain biking but I spend most of my time 'dadding' now.
"I'm not naturally a keen runner but I have learned a bit in the last few months. I've been training, mostly around Knaresborough where I live - I've been up and around the Castle more times than I care to remember."
The plan to run the London Marathon has been in pipeline since last August, but now the time has come Lenny admitted he has felt a little nervous.
He said: “I’m quite nervous. I have done more training than last time when I did it in 2005. But I have been a good lad about it this time and done a lot of training.
“I am excited and I’m looking forward to it, I’m a bit worried but I’m just going to throw myself into it and have some fun.
“There’s a lot of people going through much more difficult things than me running 26 miles around London city centre.”