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Family & Organisers Combined Statement

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Following the tragic event that took place at the JCP Swansea Half Marathon on Sunday 23rd June, whereby a young man was taken to hospital and later died, race organisers are now able to confirm with permission and close consultation with the family that the runner was indeed: Mr Wil Sern Ong, aged 21.  Mr Ong was from Malaysia and studying Environmental Engineering at the city’s University. 

Managing Director of Front Runner Events, David Martin-Jewell said, “Everyone associated and involved with the Swansea Half has been devastated by this tragic loss of life following the event. We are in very close contact with the family and supporting them at this time.

“This was the second time Mr Ong has taken part in our event whereby, he completed the half marathon in 2018.  The news of this has hit the team hard and we are also supporting the crew who were directly involved in the delivery of the event.  The safety of our race participants is of paramount importance to us and we would like to recognise the speedy response by our on-site medics and by St John Cymru Wales, who were at the scene immediately, to give emergency assistance”

A family spokesperson said, “We are so heartbroken by the sudden and tragic passing of Wil Sern Ong. No words could express how sad and painful it is for the family, Church family, English Corner and all those who knew him. He was a brother in Christ, a dear friend and a partner in ministry. His love for Jesus Christ, his passion in serving Him and his desire for others to know Him are the marks of this godly young man.

Wil Sern was a rare gem to find: well versed in God’s word, spiritually matured beyond his years, so full of life, well mannered, helpful and kind. In the short span of nearly 21 years, he had impacted and inspired so many.

A loving son and brother, Wil Sern, a staff sergant of the 12th Kuala Lumpur Boys Brigade, moved to Swansea In 2017 to embark on a new chapter in his life. His Brother said “Wil Sern loved life, the challenge it posed and the excitement of new adventure, learning and experiences. Wil Sern will be missed by so many friends here and back home in Malaysia. It is so sad that this has happened, we will all miss him so much”.

His aunt said “Wil Sern is such a special boy who would have achieved great things in his life. The last few days have been a whirlwind of emotions and we are unable to come to terms with the passing of my nephew”.

“He will be greatly missed, but we take comfort that he is with God. Please remember his family and friends who are greatly affected in your prayers as each of us is grieving differently.”

Friends of Mr Ong have set up a Justgiving/Crowd funding page to assist the family while they are in the UK. All surplus monies will be donated to the Argyle & Rhyddings Presbyterian Church, Swansea.  Please donate to the fundraising page at: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/wilsernong

For anyone wishing to make a donation via the church please contact Argyle & Rhyddings Presbytarian Church directly.

We ask that the family’s request for privacy is maintained.

Front Runner Events Statement

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At 12:17pm,  during Sunday’s JCP Swansea Half Marathon, a male runner collapsed at the 13 mile point of the event and received immediate medical attention from the St John Cymru Wales’ medics who were positioned at the location. The participant was treated at the scene and transferred to Morriston Hospital, where he later died. St John medics and emergency services dealt with this emergency with great speed and professionalism. Everyone connected with the race is devastated by this incident and our thoughts are with the family of the runner at this very difficult time.

We are in close contact with the family concerned and they have advised us that they do not wish to share any other information at this time. We ask that their privacy is respected.

Statement

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We are unable to release any further details at the present time as we are still working with all relevant authorities. The family have requested that we do not release any personal information and we need to honour and respect their privacy at this very difficult time.

We will release more information in due course.

All further press enquiries, please contact MGB ON 01792 460200

Statement

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Statement: Swansea Half Marathon 

With regret, we can confirm a participant has died at the JCP Swansea Half Marathon on Sunday 23rd June 2019. We are working closely with all emergency services into the circumstances of the incident. Our deepest condolences go to their family and friends at this time.

Honour The Half

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Are you facing the challenge with Front Runner Events by signing up to run at one or all of our races? We want you to #BeYourBest as you hit the pavements in training and at our events. We want to help and educate our runners with some race day tips and compulsory rules.

For 2019 we’ve launched ‘Honour The Half’. It’s our way of guiding you through race day so you can #BeYourBest. And if your training takes a hit and you can’t make it to the start line, we will tell you all you need to know.

Nobody wants to be forced to pull out of a race and it’s likely you won’t want your place to go to waste. There’s good reason why we can’t accept late race number transfers. We need to know exactly who is out on the course – especially when something goes wrong.
When a runner gets into trouble we immediately need to know:

  1. Name & Address
  2. Medical History
  3. Next of Kin
  4. Contact Details

We ask that everyone fills in this information on the back of their bib in case of an emergency.

Giving away bibs can put people at risk
In an emergency we’ll only have your information to go on. It’ll be your friends or family we contact and your personal and medical information we use.
We need to know who our runners are on the course so we can help you when you need it. If someone else is running with a race bib meant for you, we won’t be able to help them as effectively as we won’t have their information. If you are running on someone else’s bib, we won’t know you, so you’ll be at risk should something happen.
Run using your bib or not at all, we offer a variety of options should you be no longer able to run. If we find you’ve given away your race bib or you’ve used someone else’s bib, if you run for a running club, we’ll let them know and you will be banned from running any future Front Runner Events.

Be A FrontRunner, Not A Latecomer
Our events have become increasingly popular since our inaugural race in 2014, however, we have to work with relevant authorities to ensure the events are the best they can be. As such we must adhere to rules and guidelines too, therefore, we urge all runners to arrive at least an hour before the start of our races. This will allow you to make as many nervous toilet visits as you need, undertake any pre-race rituals, warm up and mentally rehearse your sprint finish.

Start Pen Problems
Your estimated finish time helps us to put you in the right start pen, if your training is going well you can update your time until the race packs are prepared. Maybe you just want to run with your friends, whatever the reason, you must start in your allocated start pen.
Each pen is specifically sized to allow for the correct number of runners in a designated area. Slower runners in a faster pen could contribute to congestion, which may result in trips and falls and could ruin yours and others race – don’t go in the wrong pen.
If your training hasn’t gone quite as you’d hoped, you are able to move backwards to a slower pen.
Read our Race Rules to learn about our policies and procedures and if in doubt, contact us with any questions.

Race Route Return Path From Mumbles To Swansea Marina

Everything You Need to Know for the 2019 JCP Swansea Half Marathon

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Runners, elite athletes, spectators and supporters will adorn the streets of Swansea next Sunday as the biggest race of the year stages its annual event for the City. With only a week to go until the JCP Swansea Half Marathon takes place; on Sunday 23rd June, the City will once again welcome visitors from all over the globe; some of whom will be travelling from as far away as; USA, Brazil, Australia, Singapore as well as plenty of representation from the 4 home nations.

As the event grows from strength-to-strength the race continues to attract some of the best athletes in the UK along with a mass field of seasoned runners, first timers, and locals who keep coming back year after year. And it’s easy to see why – it’s fast, it’s flat, and it boasts a stunning route that our runners simply rave about! Being recognised as the UK’s Best Half Marathon (2017 & 2018), attracting journalists and worldwide TV coverage last year, also might have a little something to do with it!

Cohort of Runners

Hundreds of runners taking part will be raising money for charity, getting into the spirit by sporting their best fancy dress, running with their club, or taking on the Corporate Challenge, where businesses go head to head – simply a brilliant way to encourage team spirit! There will be a total of 18 teams that will be battling it out to be crowned Corporate Challenge Champions.

Charities – Did You Know?

There will be another attempt by a group running for Diabetes UK Cymru alongside 1 Bloody Drop to try to set a new World Record for the most Type 1’s to run a half marathon. The race itself offers a fantastic platform for charity fundraising and many will still be raising funds up until race day for their own causes and the headline charities; Cancer Research UK, Diabetes UK Cymru, and Maggie’s Swansea (home of cancer care).

Famous Faces

The race has attracted some famous faces in previous years with the likes of sports personalities; Shane Williams, Ryan Jones, Ian Gough, as well as TV personalities: CJ De Mooi, and Eve Myles gracing the route. This year we can look forward to welcoming the return of Casualty actress; Jaye Griffiths.

Fun Time Fruits Family Dash.

Families will be joining in at the Fun Time Fruits Family Dash. Enabling everyone to experience the thrilling atmosphere of a big sporting event in the city.  Participants will get that finish line feeling when they reach the official finish at Swansea Museum taking in 2K of the half marathon route, before cheering on the finishers of the main event.  Starting at the Brangwyn Hall at 10.15am, taking place once the half marathon runners have crossed the start line. All entries for the Dash will close on the 19th June and bibs can be collected on Saturday 22nd June between 10.30am-4pm at Museum Green and on race day from 7.30am at the Information Point in the pre-event Race Village (sited near the start).

Bands Across the Bay

Runners and spectators alike will be entertained during the race by showcasing some of the best acts in South Wales. A festival atmosphere and fantastic crowd support are expected, as we welcome Welsh singing star Ros Evans to deliver a heart-stirring performance at the start, and runners will be surprised and delighted with performance spots at locations along the route and in the race village at the finish. With everything from rock, rhythm & blues to choirs and drumming groups, each and every one of them will be hoping to motivate the runners, giving them the boost they need to run the distance around the beautiful Swansea Bay.

Pacers

Participating athletes will be pleased to know that there will be a team of Racecheck Pacers at the event.  Their team offers fantastic support during the race, helping to runners achieve their target race time at the event, in the following estimated times: 1.30, 1.35, 1.40, 1.45, 1.50, 2.00, 2.10, 2.15, 2.20 and 2.30 hours.  Runners simply need to look out for their pacer (who will be wearing a flag) within their designated pen and try to stay with them throughout the race to ensure accurate timing.

Race Village

The post-event race village will be located in Museum Green which is open from 7.30am on race day, and will host; the headline charities, information point, massage tent, cool down area, live music and a selection of food stands and stalls. All bags will be collected near the start area and loaded onto an articulated Owen’s Group lorry where all baggage will be transported to the finish area after the race, so runners just need to look out for signage.  Everyone is advised to avoid bringing a bag, but if they must, ALL bags must be clearly labelled and will be subject to inspection.

The Start

The mass race will start at 10.00am which will allow travellers extra time to get to the starting pens, which are located outside the Brangwyn Hall. The route takes runners on fully closed roads past Swansea castle and along a magnificent six-mile stretch of Swansea Bay towards The Mumbles, with its iconic pier and lighthouse. The wheelchair race will start at 9.55am prior to the main field of runners and the Family Dash will commence at 10.15am.

Key Timings:

  • 07:30: Race village open
  • 07:30: Baggage lorry open near the Brangwyn Hall
  • 09:00: Road closures commence
  • 09:30: Runners enter start funnels at Guildhall Road South
  • 09:50: Baggage drop off closes
  • 09:55: Wheelchair athlete race begins
  • 10:00: Mass race starts
  • 10:15: Fun Time Fruits Family Fun Dash Starts
  • 11:00: Wheelchair winner of the JCP Swansea Half Marathon expected
  • 11:03: Male Winner Expected
  • 11:12: Female Winner Expected
  • 12:00: Winners Presentation
  • 14:00: Last Runner Expected
  • 16:00: Event closes

Race Day Guide

This features all the need to know information about the event, including safety notes, how to get into the city, road closures, and route map.  Anyone wishing to know more can download their copy via the website: http://www.swanseahalfmarathon.co.uk

 

Download & Track

This year the organisers have launched an official JCP Swansea Half Marathon App available to download on the Apple and Android stores.  Branded as the one-stop shop for information whether you’re running or simply supporting its packed with all your need to knows.  Best of all, you’ll be able to track your loved one’s live, and check all race results at the touch of a button. To download yours just head to: http://ow.ly/6jRN50uAcP4

 

Road Closures

The JCP Swansea Half Marathon is a fully closed road event, and as a result there will be road closures for the duration of the event so residents and visitors are advised to plan their trip well in advance. For further details on road closures across the city please check the website http://www.swanseahalfmarathon.co.uk/travel-parking/

 Title Record Holders

There’s no secret that there are some pretty impressive record times achieved at the JCP Swansea Half Marathon and the current title holder’s include:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wheelchair Record Holder (2016):  Richie Powell: with a record time of 61:27
Male Record Holder (2018): Cardiff AAC; Matt Clowes with a record time of 64:43,

Female Record Holder (2018): Thames Valley Harriers; Tracy Barlow time of 73:50.  Organisers expect to see an equally strong field of elites at this years race, with rivalry and competition at its best.

Team Behind The Scenes

The organising team behind the JCP Swansea Half Marathon, Front Runner Events, continues to work with their founding sponsor and Title Partner JCP Solicitors and long-term partners that include; Matthews & Co, HMT Sancta Maria and Race Nation.  The event hydration partner remains to be the Welsh favourite Brecon Carreg, and nutrition partner Eat Natural.

 

To stay ahead of all the news as it happens like the Facebook page: www.facebook.com/SwanseaHalf or follow @Swansea_HM #RunSwansea #BeYourBest on Twitter and @swanseahalfmarathon on Instagram.

Support At Maggie’s Centres Are Second To None As Patient Vows To Give Back To The Place That Helped Him

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As some will know, Maggie’s Cancer Care was founded in 1995 by the late Maggie Keswick Jencks, and the centre as we know it today; was established at Swansea in 2011.  Having been fully operational for the last 8 years it currently supports a network of approximately 900,000 people in the South West Wales region.  The service provided at Maggie’s has been recognised as second to none by the many that it supports.

The team at Maggie’s offer practical advice, emotional and social support to people with cancer and their family or friends. They are places to find advice about benefits, eating well and somewhere you will find qualified experts to provide emotional support; places to meet other people or simply sit quietly with a cup of tea.

We take time out to talk to Paul Iskander; a patient and Hodgkin’s Lymphoma survivor; as he tells us why Maggie’s is so important to him.  

Paul, from Bridgend tells us:

“As a two-time Hodgkin’s Lymphoma survivor (originally Stage 1 in 2008 and Stage 3 in 2017: age 22 and 31 respectively), Maggie’s Swansea has been one of the key charities that myself and my carers have benefitted from.

“At Maggie’s Swansea, the activities, support and classes available, in addition to the friendliness and helpfulness of the staff, have both benefitted myself and those around me immensely. It’s helped me continue to drive towards the light at the end of a long tunnel and return to a normal productive lifestyle quicker than I could have imagined.”

As a result, Paul has decided to raise money for Maggie’s Cancer Care; a lead charity partner to the upcoming JCP Swansea Half Marathon on 23rd June 2019.   Maggie’s became a charity partner to the race 3 years ago, which has raised much-needed funds for the centre to continue its important work.

Paul added:

“As someone who only really took up running as a means of trying to help return to fitness back in April 2018…. the improvements it has made have been scarcely believable! So much so, that I’m ready and lucky enough to be able to give something back. 

“The JCP Swansea Half Marathon is very fitting event considering my experience and recovery. It’ll be satisfying and emotional running past Singleton Hospital and Maggie’s, where all 12 chemotherapies, bone marrow biopsy, consultations, appointments, as well as a full week stay as an inpatient took place. So please donate a little to support a local charity so that it can continue to help people with cancer, their families and friends through one of life’s most grueling experiences.”

To find out more about Maggie’s Swansea, how you can donate or even register to secure your race place at the JCP Swansea Half Marathon contact: Leanne Jennett on 01792 200 001 or email: swanseafundraising@maggiescentres.org  Places are limited to the multi-award winning race and must be secured by the 19thJune, so if you are considering on joining #TeamMaggies atthe JCP Swansea Half Marathon go to: http://www.swanseahalfmarathon.co.uk/maggies/

The event will take place on Sunday 23rdJune starting at 10am from the Brangwyn Hall.  It is a fully marshalled road race on closed roads that is flat, fast and on a course that is perfect for beginners, and first time half marathon runners.  The route takes runners through the city along Swansea Bay to Mumbles, and returns through SA1 to finish at Swansea Museum.

Volunteers from Maggie’s will also be supporting runners at the event with cheers of encouragement along the route, and to greet them at the race village near the finish line.  The charity and organisers are urging everyone to support the event in their own way whether it’s; cheering, volunteering, taking part or gifting a donation, everybody can make this event something special for Swansea.

Temporary Road Closures & Restrictions

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TEMPORARY ROAD CLOSURES AND RESTRICTIONS

JCP SWANSEA HALF MARATHON

NOTICE 2019

 

The JCP Swansea Half Marathon is to be held on Sunday 23rd June 2019 and will require temporary road closures and traffic restrictions to accommodate the event on Sunday 23rd June 2019.

Schedule 1: Road Closures – Sunday 04-00hrs to 12:00hrs

Francis Street – from its junction with St Helens Avenue.
Guildhall Road South – its entire length.
St Helens Crescent – from its junction from St Helens Road to junction with Guildhall Road North.
Guildhall Road North (allows egress for parked cars further north than Guildhall Rd North)
Guildhall Road North – its entire length
Guildhall Rotunda.
The Baths Car Park
Henrietta Street – from its junction with B4290 St Helens Road – no access onto St Helens Road.
B4290 St Helens Road – its entire length
Bond Street – from its junction with B4290 Oxford Street and Vincent Street
Oxford Street – from its junction with B4290 St Helens Road to Beach Street
Beach Street – from its junction with B4290 St Helens Road and Oxford Street.
Argyle Street – from its junction with B4290 St Helens Road.
Wyndham Street – from its junction with B4290 St Helens Road 

Schedule 2: Road Closures – Sunday 09-30hrs to 10:45hrs

Dillwyn Street -from junction with Oxford Street, its entire length.
Christina Street – its entire length.
The Kingsway – its entire length.
Portland Street – its entire length.
Picton Lane – its entire length.
Orchard Street – its entire length.

Schedule 3: Road Closures – Sunday 09-00hrs to 10:45hrs

Cradock Street – its entire length.
Pleasant Street – its entire length.
B4290 Alexandra Place – from its junction with Orchard Street.
A4118 Dyfatty Street (southbound) – from Dyfatty Lights to its junction with Orchard Street.
B4489 High Street (southbound) – entire length access to High Street Train Station.
Ivy Place – at its junction with B4290 High Street Train Station.
Mariner Street- its entire length.
Ebenezer Street- its entire length.
Tontine Street- its entire length. –exiting right turn only
Kings Lane – its entire length.
College Street- its entire length.
Welcome Lane – its entire length.
Castle Bailey Street – its entire length.
Castle Street – its entire length.
Castle Square – its entire length.
Caer Street – its entire length.
Wind Street – its entire length.
Belle Vue Way – Its entire length.
Princess Way – its entire length.

Schedule 4: Road Closures – Sunday 09-30hrs to 12:30hrs

A4067 Oystermouth Road: – from its junction with Princess Way to West Way (eastbound and west bound traffic).
A4067 Quay Parade – from Sainsbury’s Store to Wind Street (incl Tawe Bridges)
A4067 Victoria Road – its entire length in eastbound and westbound direction.

Schedule 5: Road Closures – Sunday 09-45hrs to 16:00hrs

Somerset Place – its entire length
Adelaide Street – its entire length.
Pier Street – it’s entire length.
East Burrows Road – at its junction with Somerset Place
Cambrian Place – junction with Somerset Place
Burrows Place – its entire length
Ferry Side – its entire length
Bath Lane –  it’s entire length

Egress for residents where possible and when safe to do so.

Schedule 6: Road Closures – Sunday as below

A4067 Oystermouth Road 09:30 to 11:40: – West Way to Guildhall Road South. (westbound only)
A4067 Mumbles Road 09:30 to 12:30: – Guildhall Road South to Mayals Road (westbound only).
A4067 Mumbles Road 09:30 to 12:30 – Mayals Road to Newton Road (eastbound and westbound)
A4067 Mumbles Road 09:30 to 12:30 Newton Road to Knab Rock (westbound only)

Schedule 7: Road Closed – No Right Turn, No Left Turn: Sunday 09-30hrs to 12:30hrs

Llwynderw Drive onto A4067 Mumbles Road.
Lilliput Lane onto A4067 Mumbles Road.
Army Reserve Centre onto A4067 Mumbles Road.
Fairwood Road onto A4067 Mumbles Road.
Alderwood Drive onto Mumbles Road.
Bethany Lane onto Mumbles Road.
Palmyra Court onto Mumbles Road.
Norton Avenue onto Mumbles Road.
Norton Road onto Mumbles Road.

Egress for residents where possible and when safe to do so.

Schedule 8: No Right Turn: Sunday 09-30hrs to 12:30hrs

Mayals Road onto A4067 Mumbles Road.
Dunns Lane onto Mumbles Road.
Church Park Lane onto Mumbles Road.
Myrtle Terrace onto Mumbles Road.
Village Lane onto Mumbles Road.
George Bank onto Mumbles Road.
Newton Road onto Mumbles Road

Schedule 9: Varying Restrictions: Sunday

Dunvant Place onto A4067 Oystermouth Road – no left turn, no right turn – 09:30hrs – 10:45hrs.
Brynmill Lane onto A4067 Mumbles Road – Road Closed – 09:15hrs-12:00hrs.
Sketty Lane onto A4067 Mumbles Road – no right turn/no left turn/no U-turn – 09:15hrs-12:30hrs.
Ashleigh Road onto A4067 Mumbles Road – no right turn – 09:15hrs-12:30hrs.
Derwen Fawr Road onto A4067 Mumbles Rd – no right turn – 09:30hrs-12:30hrs.
Mill Lane onto A4067 Mumbles Road – no right turn – 09:30hrs-12:30hrs.
Unnamed Rd (The Woodman Public House) onto A4067 Mumbles Road – no right turn – 09:30hrs-12:30hrs.
Newton Road onto Mumbles Road no left/right turn- 09:30hrs-12:30hrs.

Schedule 10: No Parking Restrictions (Tow Away Zone) 0400 – 1200hrs Sunday 23rd June

Francis Street.
Guildhall Road North.
Guildhall Road South
Guildhall Car Park
St Helens Crescent.

Any vehicles parked in contradiction of these Parking Restrictions will be towed away by the Council without further notice. 

Schedule 11: No Parking Restrictions (Tow Away Zone) 0400 – 16-00hrs Sunday 23rdJune

St Helens Road.
Orchard St
Ivy Place.
High Street.
Castle Bailey Street.
Castle Street.
Wind Street.
Caer Street.
Somerset Place.
Ferry Side.
Adelaide St
Burrows Place
Bath Lane.

Any vehicles parked in contradiction of these Parking Restrictions will be towed away by the Council without further notice. 

 

Access for emergency vehicles will be maintained at all times

 

This Order is made with the consent of Welsh Government.

Running Helps Swansea Girl Rediscover Her Life Beyond The Numbers… of a Type 1 Diabetic

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Natalie Holborow, aged 28, tells us her story of life as a type 1 diabetic, her running journey, and how she hopes to help Diabetes UK Cymru break the World record this June.  Natalie, a writer from Swansea, was diagnosed when she was just eight years old.

Natalie said;

“I’d been feeling unwell for a little while, then one day my dad found me drinking from the bathroom taps in the middle of the night. I was desperately thirsty all the time, which is a common symptom of Type 1 diabetes. 

“I try to be as positive as I can about life with Type 1 but it’s really hard. It can be overwhelming sometimes.  I’m always thinking about counting my carbohydrate intake, blood sugar readings and insulin units…Sometimes it’s hard to separate the person from the numbers. I just can’t remember what it’s like to eat something without worrying.

“But this is also why running is so important to me. It reminds me of what I am capable of despite all the challenges, and helps me rediscover the person behind the numbers.”

Natalie started running at aged 16 and in 2017 ran her first ever marathon in Edinburgh. She hopes her record attempt, with others (who will make up the strong team of Type 1 runners) will inspire others with the condition, as well as break down some common misconceptions.

Natalie continued;

“I hated running when I first started, but the more I did it and the further I got, the stronger I felt.  I also noticed my blood sugars were better if I ran before dinner. Now I’m proud to say I run nearly every day.

“Training for a race is hard enough without the balancing act that is Type 1 diabetes thrown into the mix. But I want to show people that it’s totally possible. If I had seen something like this when I was a frightened, newly diagnosed little girl I would have felt so much better about the future. There is so much talk about what you can’t do with Type 1 and so many horror stories in the headlines. It’s time to change that and start celebrating what we are capable of.”

Type 1 diabetes is a complex, lifelong condition where the body cannot produce the hormone insulin, which controls the amount of sugar in the blood. It affects around 19,000 people in Wales and must be carefully managed day-to-day.

Physical exercise can impact blood glucose levels; meaning people who have Type 1 diabetes must manage their insulin and blood sugar levels before, during and after exercise.

Dai Williams, National Director, Diabetes UK Cymru, said;

“Natalie’s attitude towards living with Type 1 diabetes sends an important message to others with the condition, showing that it does not have to hold you back. It’s fantastic to hear how much running has helped her to manage the physical and the emotional side of her condition and we’re delighted to have her on our team again this year.

In 2018 a team of 69 type 1 diabetics helped set the current record at the JCP Swansea Half Marathon in collaboration with OneBloodyDrop.com.  This year, they aim to beat this number by setting the World record of most type 1 diabetics to complete a half marathon together. Further to this, organisers have opened up FREE entry to the Family Dash for all type 1 diabetics in Wales under the age of 16, with the aim of inspiring the younger generation of type 1’s.

Dai, added:

“This is not just about breaking a record: we hope to inspire others and create a community of individuals like Natalie who understand the challenges of day-to-day life with Type 1 diabetes face and can support each other. We looking forward to cheering Natalie and all our runners across the finish line on 23 June.”

Diabetes UK Cymru has guaranteed charity places remaining for the JCP Swansea Half Marathon on Sunday 23 June. Places are open to everyone, so sign up and be part of a team to inspire others, where you too could be part of a World record-breaking achievement whilst raising vital funds for charity!

The JCP Swansea Half Marathon takes place on SUNDAY 23rd JUNE 2019 starting at 10 am from the iconic Brangwyn Hall, taking runners from the city centre, leading to the mumbles, along the beautiful sweeping Swansea Bay.  The course is perfect for first-timers, fun runners, charity runners and elites on its flat, fast course.  The route is well organised, fully marshalled and supported by spectators and bands to help runners on their way for a momentous finish at Swansea Museum.

For more information on the half marathon or to enter your T1 child in the family dash, visit: www.diabetes.org.uk/get_involved/fundraising-events/swansea-half-marathon or contact the fundraising team on: 0345 123 2399.

Cancer Changed My Outlook On Life and Now I Run To Inspire Others

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Rachel Avon, 34 from Newport talks to us about her biggest life challenges and how cancer has changed her outlook in more ways than one.  Rachel was diagnosed with one of the rarest forms of cancer affecting only 1 in 3 million people.  Not only was this discovered during her pregnancy, but doctors did not inform the family until after the delivery of the baby.

Rachel recounts her experience here:

“When I was six months pregnant, I came into school one day with a pain in my side which gradually got worse.  By mid-morning I couldn’t sit down, and after a phone call to my GP, it was suggested that I go to the hospital to get checked out.  I had a blood test the same day, the results concerned the doctors and appendicitis was suspected.   They wanted to remove my appendix immediately and I had to consent that we were willing to put my life ahead of the baby’s. It was horrendous, something I wish no pregnant family has to go through.”

The operation was a complete success and Rachel carried onto full-term pregnancy and their daughter Cari was born on March 28, 2014.   Unsuspecting of anything further, the hospital called Rachel two days after giving birth to ask her to come in.  That was when doctors told her of the devastating news of the discovery of a cancerous tumour.

Rachel said:

“When I realised that doctors hadn’t told me about my cancer I was so shocked – they told me the reason for not telling me until Cari was born was due to the fact I wouldn’t be able to have an MRI to see if cancer had spread until after she was born.  In the short term, it didn’t feel right, but five years on, I know it was the right decision they made for us.”

The MRI Scans showed no signs of cancer having spread.  In the five years since surgery, doctors have carefully monitored Rachel due to the risks of the cancer returning.  But now she is officially cancer free and counts herself lucky the cancer was found in time, regarding Cari as her miracle baby.  Being pregnant triggered the issue with Rachel’s appendix meaning she needed surgery – without this, the chances are that the tumour wouldn’t have been found.

Rachel no longer requires any treatment, but one side effect of cancer was that she was left with the feeling of anxiety every day.  As a result, she started running at the suggestion of a friend whom she confided in.  Before she knew it, Rachel had completed a 12 week “Couch to 5k” training plan over the summer.  She went onto join a local running club and has now completed several 10k’s and half-marathons, including the JCP Swansea Half Marathon.

Rachel said:

“I got my all-clear scan result this year which was like a weight had been lifted off me. You can now notice a change in my anxiety, and I have a much more positive outlook on life.  Cancer has changed my outlook in every way.   I now feel in control of my life and have much more confidence to do things, and a determination to do what I want to do.  Coming through this journey and taking up running has really helped me on all sorts of levels not only from a mental health perspective but also on a physical level.”

“I was never a sporty person – I was the one who used to bring in notes to get out of PE when I was at school – so to take up running was something alien to me.  But my determination and training have enabled me to run the London marathon, and my next big race at Swansea Half, whilst raising funds for Cancer Research UK.  Trust me, if I can do it, anyone can!”

If you feel inspired by Rachel’s story and would like to take part in the SOLD-OUT JCP Swansea Half Marathon, whilst raising vital life-saving funds for Cancer Research UK goto: https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/get-involved/find-an-event/jcp-swansea-half-marathon to sign up, get your free running top, training plans, and fundraising advice. You’re sure to have an amazing experience, so why not join Team CRUK and together we will beat cancer.

The JCP Swansea Half Marathon takes place on SUNDAY 23rd JUNE 2019 starting at 10 am from the iconic Brangwyn Hall, taking runners from the city centre, leading to the mumbles, along the beautiful sweeping Swansea Bay.  The course is perfect for first-timers, fun runners, charity runners and elites on its flat, fast course.  The route is well organised, fully marshalled and supported by spectators and bands to help runners on their way for a momentous finish at Swansea Museum.  The event also holds a family fun run for anyone supporting their loved ones who are taking part in the half marathon, anyone interested in registering can do so on the website: www.swanseahalfmarathon.co.uk/family-dash

To find out more information on both races visit the website or like the Facebook page www.facebook.com/SwanseaHalf and follow @Swansea_HM #RunSwansea #BeYourBest on Twitter.