Innovate Blog
Brave Bunzl Catering Supplies employees take part in the 2019 London Marathon

Tuesday May 14, 2019

On the 28 April, Katie Bradbury, Sustainability and Packaging Innovation Manager, Elizabeth Walters, Sector Manager, and Robin Maxwell, Sales Director, took on the mammoth challenge of the London Marathon to raise money for the charity St. John Ambulance.

St. John Ambulance is a volunteer-led charitable non-governmental organisation dedicated to the teaching and practice of first aid in England to over 400,000 people per year. From the plasters and bandages during injury time at a football match to a resuscitation following a situation that’s gone horribly wrong St. John Ambulance are always there to help.

Katie, Elizabeth and Robin joined more than 40 thousand runners hoping to cross the finish line after a 26.2-mile journey, all raising money for different charitable causes.

To find out more please read our full interview with Katie and Elizabeth below:

An interview with Katie Bradbury and Elizabeth Walters:

Why did you choose to run the London Marathon?

Katie: I’ve watched the London Marathon for the last 7 years and have always wanted to experience the race and raise money for charity. I’ve entered the ballot 3 times with no success so when I got the opportunity to run for St. John Ambulance, a charity that is close to my heart, I knew I couldn’t say no.

Elizabeth: I answered the question “Would you like to do the London Marathon?” without too much time to think. I was blissfully unaware about the challenges it would present, but I can’t tell you how pleased I am that I said “Yes”.  I wasn’t sure if I could do it or not, even towards the end, and after several painful training runs in Wales, but I did, and it’s an experience that I will never forget. Anyone can do this!

Is there a particular reason why you ran for St John Ambulance?

Katie: St. John Ambulance is a charity regularly supported by Bunzl, on a personal level the charity have been at so many of my netballing events over the years attending accidents sprains and falls, it was lovely to raise some much needed funds as a thank you.

Elizabeth: The reason why I chose to run on behalf of St John Ambulance is because they are a great charity that supports first aid training in schools and businesses.  A true-life skill!

What was the atmosphere like on the big day?

Katie: It was absolutely amazing! The crowds that came out were all so enthusiastic and I will forever be grateful for the endless amounts of Jelly Babies I received running around the course. The cheering and support on Tower Bridge, Embankment and at the Mall was unforgettable and really made the experience for me, especially as by the end I was running on empty.

Elizabeth: The most amazing experience, the crowds were fantastic!

It also helped that I ran with Katie and Robin as we laughed, smiled and cried our way round the 26.2  miles. It was also great to see some familiar faces on our way round, for example Stuart Fairburn, Head of HR, who offered support on the 10th mile.

How much money did you raise for St. John Ambulance?

Katie and Elizabeth: In total, through donations from friends, family, colleagues, suppliers and customers, we managed to raise in excess of £7,000 between the three of us. Thank you to everyone who made a donation.

We must also thank Tony Sullivan who managed to secure generous donations from our partner suppliers.

Would you encourage others to take part in the London Marathon next year?

Katie: It’s one of the most amazing sporting events I’ve ever been involved in. The atmosphere is amazing and really makes all the hours of training worthwhile! Training is a huge commitment but absolutely necessary to prepare your body and mind for the challenge. If it’s your first marathon, go to enjoy the experience and be proud of your medal and t-shirt. You’ve then got a personal best to beat.

Elizabeth: Absolutely! One of my colleagues has already entered the ballot having seen what we have achieved. I will be at home next year with a glass of wine fully supporting and cheering them on  from the comfort of my sofa!

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