A retired Colonel from Bradiford has raised more than £4,000 for charity after completing a walking marathon on his 87th birthday.

Tony Hare finishes his Macmillan marathon on his 87th birthday.Tony Hare finishes his Macmillan marathon on his 87th birthday.

Tony Hare decided to raise funds for Macmillan Cancer Support after hearing the London Marathon had been postponed.

Tony, a cancer patient himself, who was diagnosed with prostate and bladder cancer in 2013, challenged himself to walk 26 miles by doing laps of a public footpath next to his home as part of his daily lockdown exercise.

After starting on April 18, he completed the challenge on May 7 – the day he turned 87 years old.

Tony said he was inspired by the efforts of Captain Tom Moore, the 100-year-old who has raised more than £32million for NHS Charities Together.

Retired colonel Tony Hare at the halfway point of his Macmillan marathon.Retired colonel Tony Hare at the halfway point of his Macmillan marathon.

Tony said: “I’ve been staying safe at home due to the pandemic, but as I’m allowed to go out for walks I decided to do something to help people who, like myself, have been affected by cancer.

“I walked 1.5 miles a day wearing my Macmillan sash with my Labrador Meg, who is older than me at 13, which makes her about 91!

“I’ve been inspired by Captain Tom, what he did was the most amazing achievement. I take my hat off to him, I have the highest regard for him as a fellow veteran.

“What Macmillan Cancer Support do with its nurses and supporting people emotionally and financially is marvellous.

“I’ve had bladder and prostate cancer and was very well looked after by the Macmillan nurses during my treatment at the Seamoor Unit in North Devon District Hospital.”

Tony, now retired, had a long career in the military, reaching the rank of Colonel in the Army before working as director general at Bexley Health Authority, chief executive of Battersea Dogs Home and also volunteered as the chair of North Devon’s Macmillan Fundraising Committee for 16 years.

Jo Anne Rigby, Macmillan fundraising manager for Devon, said: “Huge congratulations to Colonel Tony Hare for completing his marathon and raising a fantastic amount for people living with cancer.

“Macmillan is doing everything we can to help people living with cancer but due to coronavirus we are facing a significant drop in our income and the truth is that we can’t continue to be there for people who need us without the support of amazing people like Tony.

“Thank you Tony from everyone here at Macmillan.”

You can still support Tony’s Macmillan Marathon Challenge by donating to his Just Giving page.