Seven-year-old Wellesbourne boy runs 'Garden Marathon' to support NHS

A seven-year-old Wellesbourne boy spent his Easter Sunday running a 'Garden Marathon' raising money for the NHS.

By Matt Elofson
Monday, 13th April 2020, 4:06 pm
Updated Monday, 13th April 2020, 4:08 pm

Herbie Wharton spent most of Easter Sunday running 420 laps around his garden for a good cause, the NHS Charities Together.

The NHS Charities Together launched an urgent appeal, which supports NHS staff and volunteers caring for COVID-19 patients.

Herbie responded to the appeal for help, and as of today (Easter Monday April 13) he had more than doubled his target fundraising goal of £1,500 by raising £3,418 for the NHS.

Herbie Wharton with his father, Peter, and his sister, Millie

With the help of his father, Peter Wharton, he set up a Just Giving web page online for people to contribute to his fundraising campaign.

Anyone who would like to contribute to the fundraising campaign can go to the following web address:

Peter said: "Herbie a week ago asked if he could do a garden marathon after seeing something on the breakfast news and that he wanted to raise some money for the NHS who are fighting coronavirus.

"Fortunately, Herbie has a slightly mad dad, and I agreed to it. He has been inspired from his mum, Jen, doing the London marathon last year and myself doing marathons and Ironman races.

Herbie Wharton during this 'Garden Marathon' run on Easter Sunday

"I can honestly say however this was the most challenging event I have done, partly due to the number of short laps but also due to the time on my feet and having to encourage Herbie so much in the later stages of the event.

"So it all started at 8:15am on Easter Sunday and finished just over eight hours later, approximately 420 laps of the 100m garden course.

"I did the entire event with him and we had the support crew of Jen, my wife, and his big sister, Millie, on the aid stations. Plus, loads of people social distancing at the end of the driveway throughout the day.

"The original challenge was to hit £1,500 sponsorship, however Herbie did on the Saturday say do you think we can get to £3000 that would be awesome.

Herbie running the 'Garden Marathon'

"For a seven-year-old this was monumental in terms of effort and mind over matter.

"I thought he may do 10k or a maximum of a half marathon, but he just kept running and walking.

"I have never been so proud of our entire family, but specifically Herbie. Never did I imagine him wanting to do this, but the amount of happiness and joy its brought, plus great memories and for so many people has been astonishing.

"Herbie has inspired so many people. I really we want to give a massive shout out to all of his mates who supported him, the Stratford-upon-Avon U7 rugby team that he plays for, Shottery Rugby Club who supported throughout and Dominic Skinner the local Lib Dem MP #findyourinnerherbie.

Herbie and his father Peter after the 'Garden Marathon'

"We are all touched by everything which has happened. And as Herbie said to me at the end of it all, 'this must be big daddy because you’re crying and you never cry'"

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Herbie Wharton, his father, Peter, his sister, Millie and his mother, Jen after the 'Garden Marathon'