A CANCER charity based in Hartlepool well and truly smashed its aim of breaking the £100,000 barrier in 2014.
Miles for Men has raised an incredible £125,000 for Cancer Research UK and a host of other good causes since it was formed three years ago.
Founder Michael Day hailed the total as “amazing” as the charity continues to go from strength to strength.
Miles for Men leaders hoped to push through the £100,000 milestone in 2014.
But they went even further, raising £25,000 more from men’s fun runs in Hartlepool and around the country and from cash pledged by supporters.
Michael, who set up Miles for Men in 2012, after losing his beloved dad Michael Senior to cancer, said: “It is amazing. I never thought we would get to where we are from a little idea.
“Then a lot of people got involved and helped us on our way.
“A big thanks has got to go to the Hartlepool public and also in Sunderland, Newcastle and Liverpool where we do runs.
“If it wasn’t for them we wouldn’t be anything.”
In all, the charity has raised around £105,000 for Cancer Research UK, £15,000 for Hartlepool & District Hospice and several thousand to support people affected by cancer and their families.
In July, a sea of 900 men and boys pounded the Hartlepool promenade in the town’s third annual Miles for Men race.
Other highlights of the year included brave squaddies in Afghanistan holding their own 5km run for the charity in the sweltering of the desert.
“My dad was part of the Army so to see the lads running in Afghanistan with their Miles for Men T-shirts on was a big thing for me,” added Michael, 41, a dad of four.
And Hartlepool United Supporters’ Scooter Club collected £4,000 after a great day in the summer featuring a rally, live bands and games.
Just before Christmas, Michael and other members of the team delivered sweets and toys to children in the Newcastle’s RVI Hospital.
And 2015 is set to be just as busy with the fourth Miles for Men Hartlepool run due to take place in late July.
Michael will do a parachute jump and other supporters are already planning coast to coast runs.
Michael also thanked his fellow Miles for Men team members Mark Sickling, Anthony Day, Richard Hegarty, Natalie Aston, Jane Sickling, Kevin Hill, Richard Griffiths and Joanne Makepeace.
Janet Leafe, Cancer Research’s local fundraising manager, said: “For Miles for Men to raise £100,000 just for Cancer Research UK is an amazing amount.
“We are very grateful for their hard work and commitment. In the North East around 14,700 people a year are diagnosed with cancer.
“Cancer Research UK is making so much progress and death rates in the region have fallen by around a quarter over the last 20 years but there is always so much more to do.
“The money that Miles for Men have raised and are raising will contribute to the progress we are making in the next 20 years.”