Rotherham: Fundraising runners showered in vibrant rainbow of colour for children’s hospice

A runner dons colourful glasses in support of the hospice
A runner dons colourful glasses in support of the hospice

Around 2,000 adults and children were showered from top to toe in vibrant shades of paint to show their support for Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice.

Walkers, joggers and runners alike got messy and had great fun at the region’s first Colour Dash run, which was staged at Rother Valley Country Park on Saturday 3rd May.

The Bluebell Wood colour dash in full pelt

The Bluebell Wood colour dash in full pelt

Colour Dash runs are hugely popular in America, but this was the first event of its kind in South Yorks- which saw participants covered in a different colours of paint at each kilometre of the 5k course.

Helen Mower, head of fundraising at Bluebell Wood, said: “We’re very grateful for all the support we’ve received- it has been amazing.”

“It was an inspiring event and truly wonderful to see so many people getting messy and having a good time while raising sponsorship for Bluebell Wood.”

“The fun filled day attracted groups of families and friends who relished the chance to get covered in paint, and also had the chance to dress up in eye-catching event merchandise, including tutus and sun visors.”

The warm up gets under way

The warm up gets under way

“Among those taking part were families who use the hospice, so have first-hand knowledge of how it’s a happy place full of love, laughter and happiness.”

Denise Singheyely, whose son Theo, aged seven, regularly visits the hospice, said: “It’s been a brilliant day and such a good laugh. Theo loves going to Bluebell Wood- it’s a home from home for us.”

Sally Baker, from Kiveton Park, was given the honour of wearing the ‘number one’ by hospice patron and One Direction pop star, Louis Tomlinson.

He had to turn down the opportunity to wear the race number due to being on a world tour but wanted a member of Sally’s family to have it after hearing about her grandson’s miraculous survival story.

Sally’s grandson Harrison was taken to Bluebell Wood in North Anston for end of life care at three weeks old after being diagnosed with meningitis.

After his ventilator was switched off, it was thought that he would only survive anything from minutes to a few hours.

But Harrison left his family and doctors stunned and began breathing for himself without the machine, making a miraculous recovery. Harrison, aged 16 months, is continuing to develop normally except for deafness in one ear and mild cerebral palsy.

To say a special ‘thank you’ a team of family members called Harrison’s Heroes were inspired to take part in Colour Dash.

Sally said: “It is hard to put into words what the family went through when Harrison was a tiny baby. It was the toughest time, and I’m not sure what we would have done without the help and support from Bluebell Wood.”

“I am so proud to have taken part in Colour Dash and was very honoured to have worn the number one. It was so much fun, with a great atmosphere, and I hope it will raise loads of money for this great charity.”

Bluebell Wood is already planning ahead for next year’s event visit to register your interest for 2015.