Grandmother runs Royston in Blue 5k solo to raise money for charity

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust - Credit: Supplied

A 75-year-old grandmother has taken part in the 5k Royston in Blue fun run, despite the event being held virtually this year.

Phillida Shaw - who has six grandchildren and has lived in Ashwell since 1973 -  joined Royston in Blue eight years ago and has taken part every year since. Through her running she has raised more than £15,000 for Teenage Cancer Trust.

The event takes place annually on Therfield Heath, and raises around £16,000 per year for the charity.

Phillida said: "When the 2020 Royston in Blue was cancelled due to the pandemic I was very disappointed. 

"The whole town seemed to turn out for the run on the Heath - there were bands and cheerleaders and great enthusiasm. It was great fun.

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust - Credit: Supplied


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"So in 2020 I ran a solo 5k around the lanes near my house. It was not quite the same, but my friends and family made generous donations online during lockdown on my JustGiving page and by posting cheques."

Phillida was inspired to run the event solo after the 2021 Royston in Blue event on the heath was cancelled, and she read the front page of the Crow - in which Judith Anderson of Teenage Cancer Trust suggested former participants run the event on their own to raise funds.

After weeks of training, Phillida completed her 5k run in 30 minutes on the morning of Sunday, June 20 - and raised more than £1,600 for the charity.

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust - Credit: Supplied

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She said: "I am lucky that my daughters and their families are in good health. Running for Teenage Cancer Trust is a way I can recognise my good fortune, while raising money for young people facing a cancer diagnosis.

"Did you know that one teenager is diagnosed with cancer every day of the year? And that Teenage Cancer Trust's specialised nurses aim to be there for them and their families throughout this scary journey?"

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust - Credit: Supplied

This year, participants like Phillida have been encouraged to do '5k your way' - which could have been a run, a swim, a walk or a bike ride.

Phillida said: "I hope we will all be able to get together for Royston in Blue 2022. We could make it the best one yet!"

Phillida's JustGiving page will remain open until Saturday, July 10. To donate go to www.justgiving/fundraising/phillida-shaw9

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust

Phillida Shaw took part in the 5k Royston in Blue challenge solo to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust - Credit: Supplied

Have you completed a Royston In Blue 5k this June? There's still time! Send us details and your pictures to news@royston-crow.co.uk.

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