April 26, 2019
Sunday 28 April is Marathon day in London and it’s one of the best days to be in our home city. The bunting comes out and everyone’s in a party mood, cheering on the 42,000 people who are undertaking the 26 mile run. Apart from a brilliant day out you’ll see world class athletes (including Mo Farah), first timers, celebrities and the crazy ones running in fancy dress.
You’ll witness the limits of athletic endurance, be part of one of the biggest fundraising day on the planet, and perhaps see world records being broken. And you’ll come away incredibly inspired, with a new found faith in humanity. It’s a massively fun day with hundreds of thousands of people lining the route to cheer the runners on, against a backdrop of some of London’s most magnificent landmarks.
This year we have four runners raising money for WE.org:
Completing the London Marathon will be a dream realised for Greg Jones, one of our Airbus pilots, who’s been running for a couple of years now.
“I’m running the marathon because I think it’s the ultimate test of mental strength. The physical side of it is well documented but I think in that last painful 10km or so, you find out who you really are!” he said. “The London race is also such an iconic event, doing amazing things for all different sorts of charities, that I think anyone who enjoys running would love to have the opportunity to run it. I just feel so fortunate that I have been given the opportunity to do so and represent such an amazing charity as WE.”
Find out more on Greg’s Virgin Money giving page
Nicolas Elford works in our US sales team and is flying all the way from Atlanta to take part in the London Marathon.
“I’ve always enjoyed running, and this is the race I’ve always wanted to participate in. I wanted the opportunity to represent Virgin Atlantic and do some good by raising money for our charity partner WE. I’ll also be raising money for Stonewall, an LGBT non-profit whose mission I personally connect with.
“I see the work WE does both domestically in the US and UK, focusing on education and long term programmes, as vital. Investing in our local communities is important to me: ensuring disadvantaged children have the same opportunities, education & attention promises a better tomorrow for all of us.”
Find out more on Nicolas’ Virgin Money giving page
Tony Tennant, cabin crew, is running his first ever marathon having only completed half of that distance before. Although he finds the challenge daunting he’s determined to push himself to the max on Sunday.
“WE is a movement that believes when we come together we can create an even better world. The charity works with young people in schools across the UK and North America, supporting them with the resources they need to effect change,” Tony said, explaining why he’s firmly behind the cause. “WE delivers an international development model that addresses the five primary causes of poverty, increasing access to education, healthcare, clean water and food, and economic opportunity to those who need it most.”
Find out more at Tony’s Virgin Money giving page
Our final runner is Nicola Deether, one of our cabin service supervisors who is running her fifth marathon!
Find out more on Nicola’s Virgin Money giving page
According to Megan Welch, our sustainability engagement executive, our people really are so passionate about supporting causes they care about, and that’s one of the things she loves most about her job.
“Every year we get tons of applications from across the business to be part of the Virgin Atlantic team running the London Marathon, all with their own stories as to why they want to take on the challenge,” she explained. “Our team this year have already raised nearly £4,000, which will support our charity partner WE do some amazing work in UK schools and international communities.”
Our team have all been up at the Marathon expo for the last three days helping the runners register for the big event and working with Sports Tours International to discuss travel plans with runners thinking of travelling to other marathons. The excitement and nerves were building ahead of the big day. Personal goals are going to be reached, barriers smashed, targets broken. If you’re going along to cheer the runners on, keep an eye out for team Virgin Atlantic. Here’s wishing Greg, Nicolas, Tony and Nicola and all the other Virgin Atlantic runners a successful and memorable race.