Marathon man will finish run he had to stop because of broken hip

The Bolton News: Stuart Barnes on his crutches but raring to go Stuart Barnes on his crutches but raring to go

NOT even a broken hip has stopped dedicated fundraiser Stuart Barnes from completing a marathon for charity.

Mr Barnes, director of Zac’s Youth Bars, suffered the injury three miles from the finishing line while competing in the Greater Manchester Marathon in April.

But just over two months later, Mr Barnes is setting off from the exact point where he broke his hip and will cover the final three miles on crutches.

He broke his hip in Urmston and managed to locate the exact location where he stopped running using Google Maps - and when he completes the marathon, on Friday, he will be assisted by a support team.

The marathon is one of 50 challenges Mr Barnes is taking part in 50 months, with the aim of raising £50,000 in time for his 50th birthday in 2016.

All the money raised will go to Zac’s Youth Bars, a youth project based in Farnworth, Kearsley and Little Lever.

Mr Barnes, aged 47, has been receiving physiotherapy and has been housebound. But despite his setback, he is determined to get his challenges back on track.

He said: “I’m a stubborn individual and it’s absolutely vital that I finish this challenge.

“Unless I raise money, Zac’s can’t open its doors. We’ve seen a rising number of young people using youth projects and we need to meet that demand.”

He added: “To feel your hip snap when you’re 23 miles into a marathon is really disappointing.

“I kept thinking ‘I’ll get up, I’ll get going’, but I couldn’t stand up. It’s been frustrating for me — I’ve had two months off my feet.

“But I’m making progress and I’m keeping myself occupied.”

Mr Barnes is no stranger to a gruelling physical challenge, having already completed the North West Tough Mudder challenge, the National Three Peaks Challenge and the Manchester to Blackpool Bike Ride among others.

To date, he has raised £12,500 from his challenges and has 30 months to raise the remaining £37,500.

However, he says, that after his latest experience, this marathon will be his last.

Mr Barnes added: “I’ve done five marathons, so I’ve given it a good go, but I’m looking for other challenges now, ones which aren’t as physical.”

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