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Zany 100 mile rickshaw run to raise thousands for Southend Hospital

12 June 2018


Dean Ovel, 42, from Westcliff is no stranger to charity running challenges to help raise money for Southend University Hospital. His latest running related stunt will see the bearded Leigh Striders’ runner attempting to run 100 miles up and down Southend seafront whilst towing his self-built rickshaw, complete with ever-changing passengers sat in his contraption.

The ambitious fundraiser takes place this weekend over a 32-hour period, starting at 8am on Saturday 16 June and finishing at 4pm on Sunday 17 June. This year Dean is raising money for two Southend Hospital charity appeals, its 20th anniversary Forwards Appeal, and the Dementia Appeal. Dementia is fast becoming a condition that touches the lives of many, and it's an appeal close to Dean's heart as both his Nans had dementia.

Dean said: "Have you ever wondered how far it's possible to run pulling a passenger on a rickshaw? Yes? Me too! Hence why I'm planning to pull my custom made rickshaw up to 100 miles over a 32 hour period.

"I'm not doing it alone, this time I'll be joined by 32 individual passengers over a 5km (3.1 mile) loop along Southend seafront starting and finishing outside Adventure Island. I'll collect a new passenger every hour, on the hour day and night for 32 hours."

Dean's also hoping to be joined by support runners from the local running community, friends and family along the way. There will also be several events happening at 'base camp' outside Adventure Island (near Feelgoods) for children to join in. 

Elise Fleetwood, Events & Corporate Relations Manager for Southend Hospital Charity, said: "Dean's dedication to Southend Hospital continues to wow us, he's just so inspired with his inventive ideas. Over the years he has personally raised over £15,000 for Southend Hospital Charity and made a real difference to local people's lives. We know that his rickshaw challenge will be just as successful."

Two years ago Dean ran in the confines of his own 8ft tall hamster wheel for 24 hours, raising money for the hospital's Dementia Appeal and in 2014 he was putting his best foot forward, this time running ten marathons in just eight days.

The big question isn't perhaps whether Dean will complete his latest charity challenge, but more what he'll come up with for 2020.

You can sponsor Dean here: http://bit.ly/Rickshaw100 and follow his exploits on Twitter and Facebook following the hashtag #Rickshaw100