On your paws, get set, go – again!

A Levens dog lover is once again aiming to raise thousands for Dogs Trust, by taking part in the 2020 virtual London Marathon.

Annie Rawlinson will join thousands of runners, joggers and walkers across the world on Sunday 4th October to take part in the 40th edition of the race by completing the 26.2 miles in 24 hours.

Earlier this year when the London Marathon should have taken place in April, Annie went the distance for Dogs Trust, completing a marathon by running around her garden 210 times, sometimes in her now famous Brewski dog outfit, raising almost £1,800 for the charity.  

Annie says:

"Back in April, everyone was hoping that by October we’d all be able to descend on London for the fantastic London Marathon but that wasn’t to be, so I’m taking to the local lanes to raise money for Dogs Trust.

"Dogs Trust has continued to find forever homes for dogs during the pandemic but they estimate that up to 40,000 more dogs could be at risk of abandonment as a result of the coronavirus crisis, which is shocking and very sad. That’s why I want to do whatever I can to support them so they can continue to help make dogs happy by finding them their perfect families."

56-year-old Annie has chosen to raise money for Dogs Trust, which finds homes for over 14,000 homeless hounds every year, in memory of her cousin’s husband, Brian Coulthwaite, who died suddenly in March last year. Brian, a Dogs Trust supporter, was the landlord of the Watermill Inn & Windermere Brewery in Ings, near Windermere. His love of dogs was well known, with four-legged friend visitors to the pub always getting served with water and tasty treats before their owners had their refreshment requests satisfied. 

Annie and her friend Gina Pennington will be taking to the local lanes starting at 7.30am from The Watermill, calling in at the churchyard to remember Brian, then passing through Staveley onto Kendal via the River Kent. Their route will take them along the canal to finish near Bolton-le-Sands.

Annie will begin the race in her Brewski outfit and is hoping to complete it in around six hours.

Russell Benson, Community Fundraising Team Manager for Dogs Trust, said:

"We are so grateful to Annie. The London Marathon raised over £40,000 for Dogs Trust last year so it’s wonderful that Annie is willing to do a second marathon within six months to raise money for us.

"Every penny raised will go towards making sure dogs we are currently looking after and the thousands of dogs we anticipate will find themselves without a home in the future as a result of the pandemic, have everything they need until the time is right for them to find their forever homes."

If you would like to support Annie, please go to her fundraising page here.