Budleigh woman’s weekly marathon to boost coronavirus vaccine research

PUBLISHED: 12:00 19 May 2020 | UPDATED: 11:20 21 May 2020

Debbie Newson has committed t running a marathon every week until a vaccine is found for coronavirus. Picture: Contributed

Debbie Newson has committed t running a marathon every week until a vaccine is found for coronavirus. Picture: Contributed

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A Budleigh woman is gearing up to run a marathon every week until a vaccine is found for coronavirus.

Debbie Newson, 45, has joined a campaign to raise money for research being done at Oxford University into a possible cure for Covid-19.

The nurse, who has only ever run two marathons in her life, has committed to running 26.2 miles – the length of a marathon - every week until a vaccine has been found.

Her challenge begins on Saturday (May 23) when she will run from her Budleigh home, alongside the old train line into Exmouth and along the seafront.

Mrs Newson is aiming to raise £10,000.

She said: “I wanted to do something towards the coronavirus crisis, and I figured what we really need is a vaccine.

“I am looking forward to losing half a stone in weight and looking forward to the challenge and hopefully raising the money.”

The 45-year-old launched Budleigh Runners in October 2019 and ran a marathon on the day which would have been this year’s London event.

She said: “I did the London Marathon in 2019 and I was training for the 2020 event but that was postponed.

“I have just kept my fitness up doing my running and cycling.

“I have got a route I tend to run along the railway into Exmouth, but I will have to find other routes too.

“I find it easier to run 13.1 miles in one direction, then I have to get home somehow.”

More than 150 scientists at Oxford University are working to better understand coronavirus and protect communities from the virus.

Mrs Newson is a volunteer nurse and had put her name forward to help the NHS 111 service in the early days of the coronavirus crisis, but her asthma made her too high risk.

She said: “I am a nurse and I was frustrated I couldn’t do my bit.”

To find out more about the Oxford University research, visit the website

To donate, visit her Virgin Giving Money site


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