A BRAVE little boy battling cancer has inspired a mum-of-two to tackle the UK’s most iconic marathon.

Helen Coates decided she would take part in the London Marathon after her friend Jane Berry’s son Luca, aged five, was diagnosed last July with aggressive form of childhood cancer, alveolar rhabdomysarcoma.

Ms Coates, of Sandgate Avenue, Ringley, has had to fit a gruelling training regime around her job as a solicitor in Manchester, as well as looking after her children, Nyah, aged six, and Ethan, aged three.

The 38-year-old says boosting cash for children’s cancer care is the least she could do to support Luca and his mum Jane Berry.

Ms Coates, who has so far raised more than £670 for Children with Cancer UK, said: “Luca and his family focussed on the positive throughout everything they’ve been through and that’s what inspired me. I did one in 2006, but I never thought I’d do it again.

“It has been difficult getting up at 4.30am to go for runs before work, but it is nothing compared to what Lucas and his family have had to deal with.

"All of Jane’s friends have rallied round to do as much fundraising as we can for this fantastic charity.”

Luca, from Manchester Road, Clifton, is currently having chemotherapy.

Mum Jane, who is doing the Great Manchester Run on May 18 for the same charity, said: “It has been a nightmare, but Luca has been an inspiration.

“We have had support from the whole community, not just our group of friends. It is amazing Helen is doing a marathon again.”

To sponsor Ms Coates, go to: justgiving.com/HelenCoates2014