Partially-sighted mum gearing for London Marathon challenge

PUBLISHED: 14:31 01 March 2019 | UPDATED: 14:48 01 March 2019

Joe Cooke and Jane Carpenter are taking part in the London Marathon. Picture: Daniel Wilkins

Joe Cooke and Jane Carpenter are taking part in the London Marathon. Picture: Daniel Wilkins


A partially-sighted mum is proving that disability is no barrier as she aims to complete the London Marathon for the first time.

Jane Carpenter’s friend Joe Cooke will be her eyes on the day, guiding her around the 26.2-mile course, pointing out potential hazards like kerbs and empty water bottles on the floor.

The pair was granted entry through disability charity Scope who, in return, asked them to raise a minimum of £2,000.

With two months to go until they line up on the start-line alongside thousands of fellow runners, they have smashed that target and raised more than £3,000 to date.

They are aiming to be one of Scope’s best fundraisers which will allow their husbands to be there at the finish line.

Jane thanked everyone who has donated to them so far.

She said: “I don’t know how many years vision I have so it will mean everything to cross that finish line – provided we have done well.”

Joe, a member of Exmouth Tri-Hards Ladies and Exmouth Running Belles, said: “I’m going to be there as I can be a bit more aware of thing ahead.”

They are hoping that, should they cross the finish line, both will get a medal for their efforts.

The pair have become friends as both attend weekly spinning classes at Exmouth Leisure Centre.

Jane has been going for five years and Joe started going to recover from an injury she sustained at the Edinburgh Marathon in 2015.

It was after one of these classes in late November last year that Jane asked Joe: “Would you do another marathon?”

They have been training for the event since then with Jane running around the footpaths in East Budleigh with her husband Andy supporting on a bicycle.

Jane and Joe have started doing longer runs as the London Marathon draws nearer and have even taken part in parkruns in Exmouth to simulate the crowded conditions the pair will likely face in London in April.

“We’re running once or twice a week. I run with my husband and we have been increasing our runs gradually on pre-planned routes,” said Jane.

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