Like many events this year, the 2020 London Marathon had to make some changes due to COVID-19. Virgin Money adapted and set up a Virtual Marathon where two of our fundraisers put on their running shoes and decided to continue as planned and run a marathon for Home-Start UK, but virtually! 

Richard Holland and Melissa Potts decided that the pandemic was not going to stop them raising money for Home-Start UK and run 26.2 miles. Training for a marathon is hard enough, but doing it by yourselves can be difficult as Melissa explains, ‘It was hard motivating myself with it not being in London and a ‘proper’ marathon, but once I got into it, it was so fantastic’.

Richard echoes this, ‘The training was rewarding but exceptionally hard! I learned lots of lessons the hard way, and the summer training was brutal!! I enjoyed the winter training for the original April date, but as a fair haired guy the summer training was too hot for me’

On Sunday 4th October, both runners ran independently from one another and joined up with 45,000 other runners up and down the UK – and across the world. 

Running without the cheer of the London crowds was a challenge in itself, let alone the sheer distances they had to run. ‘Sunday was a challenging and amazing day, it was wonderful to be able to run, and a privilege to take part on behalf of Home Start’, said Richard.

‘I actually loved it’, Melissa explains, ‘Afterwards I felt so emotional and accomplished! Just so amazing to do it for such an amazing charity’.  

Next October, we would love to have you with us as part of #TeamHomeStart.

If you would like a chance to take part, please complete the Charity Place Application

Find out more about running in the 2021 London Marathon for Home-Start, here