Dambusters team start charity run
Saturday 5th October 2013, 7:00PM BST.
Brave airmen from the famous RAF No 617 Dambusters Squadron hit the ground running today to try to raise awareness of disability.
The team began their charity quest to run 700 miles (1,126.5km) in seven days, just a week before their final deployment to Afghanistan, at the site of the first Leonard Cheshire home, Le Court in Liss, Hampshire.
They are running in relay and the first day saw them stop off at The Dragon School in Oxford, Leonard Cheshire’s former prep school, where they met local schoolchildren and residents.
The charity run, due to end in Lossiemouth in northern Scotland, is in aid of Leonard Cheshire Disability. The organisation was founded by Group Captain Leonard Cheshire, who commanded the squadron during the Second World War.
Dambusters Squadron Leader Mark Jackson said that, despite the weeks of intensive military training to prepare for deployment, e veryone is proud to be taking part in the sponsored run because “disability is a cause close to anyone who has toured Afghanistan”.
He said: ” Group Captain Leonard Cheshire was a commander of our squadron during World War Two who opened his home to disabled veterans following the war. Our guys have seen how the charity supports disabled people today and were moved beyond words.
“There is no more fitting tribute than to use our strength in the Dambusters Run to repay this.”
Paralympians, footballers and chairman of Leonard Cheshire Disability Ilyas Khan are set to join the team along the route, which winds through Oxford, Northampton, Peterborough, Sheffield, Salford, Blackburn, Newcastle, Edinburgh, Perth and Moray.