Long distance runner comes home to support charities with Halloween ball

What the garden looked like before
THIRSTY WORK Jessica completes the Budapest Marathon

Jessica Standley has almost completed her challenge after a whistlestop tour of eight destinations: New York, Dublin, London, Berlin, Florence, Barcelona, Vienna and Budapest.
But while a stress fracture put her endurance test on hold, the 32 year old decided to put the time to good use by organising a black tie ball which she hopes will push her £10,000 fundraising target over the finish line.
“Initially I said I would run one marathon, then it became ten,” she said. “My friends and family think I’m mad.
“I’ve been out for about five months with injury, and two or three months of that has meant no running at all, but I always knew I’d complete the challenge, even if it took me a bit longer than planned.
Jessica, a lawyer who specialises in helping survivors of abuse, will split the money between WheelPower, which helps disabled people get into sport, and the National Association of People Abused in Childhood [NAPAC].
“When you’re doing long runs you can feel great one minute and like you can’t carry on the next – but I always remind myself of my reason why, and that keeps me motivated,” she said.
“Both WheelPower and NAPAC are relatively small but incredibly important charities – and I know how much this means to them.
Jessica grew up in Tunbridge Wells, where many of her family and friends still live. The black tie ball will be held this Saturday [October 27] at Nevill Golf Club.
The inspirational guest speaker will be Paula Craig, MBE, a detective inspector in the Metropolitan Police.
Ms Craig became the first woman to complete the London Marathon as a runner, and again as a wheelchair user after a road traffic accident left her paralysed from the waist down.
Comedian Stephen Owen will be compering for the evening, which is sponsored by Beau Property.
There will also be a raffle and auction with Centre Court tickets for Wimbledon and lunch at the House of Lords among the prizes.
Tickets cost £75 per person or £750 for a table of ten. If you would like to attend the dinner, please email: 10marathons 10countries@gmail.com
To sponsor Jessica, search for fundraiser Jessica Standley at virginmoneygiving.com

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