Marathon man Lee is up for an award

Marathon runner Lee Dodgson is up for a Best of Hartlepool Award.

Marathon runner Lee Dodgson is up for a Best of Hartlepool Award.

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A selfless fundraiser has been recognised for his marathon efforts with a nomination for a Best of Hartlepool Award.

Firefighter Lee Dodgson ran seven marathons in seven days in support of Hartlepool and District Hospice in May last year, raising an incredible £18,859.

Lee, 30, from Ryehill Gardens, Hartlepool, was joined by co-runners to support him as he ran a daily circular route of 26.2 miles between May 4 and 10.

Lee made hospice history by raising the most sponsorship money through a fundraising event.

He said his fundraising efforts were ‘a drop in the ocean’, as the hospice is a charity whose services cost £2.34million to provide every year.

Only 23% of this is funded by the Government, resulting in the need to raise more than £5,000 every single day.

He said: “It is an honour to be nominated, although it is not the reason why I took up the challenge.

“The main reason was to raise as much money as possible for the hospice and to raise awareness of the work they do in the town – something that I hope has a lasting effect and makes people aware there are things they can do to help.”

Lee said the hospice is important to him after it cared for his friend and former firefighter, Richard Kelly, who died of cancer aged 37.

“The service the hospice provided was first-class,” he said. “It is humbling to be recognised.”

Greg Hildreth, from Hartlepool and District Hospice, said Lee deserved recognition for his phenomenal efforts, which have inspired so many.

He said: “Lee’s amazing feat of endurance, which was all done to help others, deserves to be recognised and remembered.

“This was a truly selfless gesture that took up around half a year of his life on top of his work and home responsibilities.

“He worked tirelessly on raising awareness of his fundraising and the services of the hospice.”