Meet our London Marathon 2020 Runners

Published: Thu, 5th December 2019, 10:13:00 AM

Update! The 2020 London Marathon is now set to take place on Sunday 04 October.

We are delighted to  announce  that the following people will be running the 2020 London Marathon for TOFS:

  • Sarah Barnes
  • Darren Webborn
  • Richard Lawrence
  • Luke Jones
  • Ann Weeks

Sarah Barnes

This is Jacob (Bobby as he’s affectionately known). My nephew and very own superhero. Some of you will have met him but most of you will have heard me talk about him and the ordeal that he has gone through in the first 4 years of his life. Because of him I am taking on a challenge that befits the strength and courage of a true superhero and will be running the London Marathon in 2020 to support TOFS, the charity that has provided an emotional lifeline to my sister and her family.


A TOF child can be fixed but will never be cured, the physical scars will fade but the emotional ones will live on and the support that TOFS provide, that has been invaluable to date, will continue to support Jacob, his family and other families through the surgery and medical intervention that is still to come.


I hope by completing this challenge and with your sponsorship this valuable charity will continue to support TOFS children and their families.

See Sarah's fundraising page here


Darren Webborn

I’m 40 years old and married to Naomi and father of three amazing kids George 9yrs, Emily 3yrs & Benjamin 8mths.

I’m supporting TOFS as a thank you for all the support and advice Naomi and myself have received after George was diagnosed after Birth, The advice and help has been massive for us.

My inspirational, not so little, George makes us proud everyday with the way he has learnt to deal with his day to day life, not allowing anything to set him back, and again as a promise to George we wanted to say thank you in our own way, albeit me having to do all the running!!!!

I look forward to meeting more TOF parents and TOFS along our journey to London Marathon 2020.

See Darren's fundraising page here

Richard Lawrence

I have wanted to do some fundraising for the TOFS charity for some time.  My daughter was born with a short gap TOF, which was repaired at Bristol children’s hospital at 2 days old, and after a stay in hospital for about 2 weeks Ellie-mae came home.  Ellie-Mae has struggled with eating and needs help regularly. On several occasions when food has got stuck she has needed paramedics, ambulances to A&E and operations to get the food stuck removed. She also struggles with chest infections and croup, and has ongoing  anxiety issues which can make things very difficult for her in a day to day basis.

The TOFS charity and the online community has been amazing for us over the past few years, giving us lots of support and useful information.

I have been running for fitness and in many local events for other local charities over the last couple of years. I have always wanted to complete the London marathon myself as a personal challenge, as both my mum and dad have completed it in the past. I would be very proud to run it for such a worthy cause.

See Richard's fundraising page here


Luke Jones

I am privileged to be running the London Marathon for everyone like my Daughter Angel, who was born unable to swallow where the journey for the family seems like a marathon.

My daughter Angel was born in 2014 in Southampton with TOF/OA, she had her repair at 8hrs old. The early years were the hardest, with her recurrent chest infections and GORD resulting in pneumonia and requiring a fundoplication in 2015.

Angel began eating solids after her 4th birthday, and it was such a proud moment when she started school this year and can eat alongside her new friends

My motivation is to support TOFS charity, who support families, and continue to research. The TOFS online community is a great source of information and I wish we had been part of it in the early years.

See Luke's fundraiser here

Ann Weeks

I am running the London Marathon in my 40th year, as a memory of my son.

My son John was born on 8th April 2003. I was informed when I was pregnant, he was going to be born with the TOF condition. When he was born, he was whisked off to intensive care, he was in hospital for 5 months. John had many operations and was given a tracheostomy to help him breathe and was fed through a gastrostomy. His immune system was so low, that even when he came home, he had many visits to hospital. 

However even when times got hard for him, bearing in mind he was resuscitated many a time, he never stopped smiling. About 14 months of age, he was finally allowed to start eating yoghurt and plans were to remove his tracheostomy, however this was not to be. On 19th July 2004, at just 15 months old, he passed away, peacefully in his sleep. His secretions were too low and exploded his lungs. 

This is why I am running this marathon for TOFS. I want to be able to raise money for more research to be done so that other babies/children do not experience the same problems that my son had.  Hopefully one day, TOF will not be something that anyone will have to go through.

See Ann's fundraising page here

© Tracheo-Oesophageal Fistula Support
TOFS is a Registered Charity in England and Wales (327735) and a Private Company Limited By Guarantee without Share Capital, registered in England and Wales (2202260).
Registered address: TOFS, St. George’s Centre, 91 Victoria Road, Netherfield, Nottingham NG4 2NN.
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