Ali's Story - Great North Run

“The staff were all amazing and the place was an oasis of calm, peace and support for us all, both before and after mum’s death.”

Ali Halliday has recently relocated back to the North East after having lived in London for a number of years. A Northerner at heart, she has signed up for the 2023 Great North Run, something she says is a rite of passage for those who call Newcastle home.

Twenty-five years ago, Ali came into contact with St Oswald’s Hospice for the first time, following her mum’s terminal cancer diagnosis.

Ali Halliday Jill Ross_web

Ali reflected:

“St Oswald’s was such a lovely place. Mum was admitted to the hospice with advanced bowel cancer and even today, I can still remember the fantastic care she received. It was an extremely difficult time for us as a family but the staff were so kind, caring and supportive.”

This year’s Great North Run is not far away and despite having never ran a half-marathon before, Ali is determined to give it her best shot, having already completed the Great North 10km.

Ali shared, “This will be a huge challenge for me. I started my training plan back in May and the furthest I’ve run so far is just over 11km. I’m hoping to keep running for the whole distance and can’t wait to hear the crowd cheering me on along the way.”

With her family amongst the crowd on the day, Ali is excited at the prospect of getting across the finish line and being able to celebrate her achievement.

Ali explained, “I’ve not done anything like this before so to have the support of my friends and family, to have people sponsoring me and raise money, it’s so encouraging. Knowing that will definitely motivate me to keep on going.”

With the promise of refreshments and a post-run massage at the St Oswald’s tent in the charity village, there’ll be lots to enjoy and celebrate as our runners complete the 13.1 mile distance.

Ali added, “I’ll be elated to get over that line and to make it to the tent at the end. I might not have the fastest time on the day but that’s okay. Ever since mum spent her final days at the hospice, I’ve always wanted to give something back to this incredible cause; it’s somewhere she benefitted so much from.”

We wish Ali, and all of our Great North Runners, all the very best as they take on this year’s half-marathon.

Thank you for helping to keep our doors open for all who need us across the North East.

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