Featured charities announced for 2015 BATHALF

June 16, 2014 // Rachel Ellis


Jamie Feilden (Jamie’s Farm), Halena Coury (Bath Rugby Foundation), Fiona Gilbert (Bath Rugby Foundation), Laura Perrett (Teenage Cancer Trust),Emily Lynch (Forever Friends Appeal) and Laura Pearce (Forever Friends Appeal) pose for a photograph, Great P

Organisers of the Bath Half Marathon (BATHALF) have this week announced a new line up of charity partnerships for 2015. The Lead Charity for next year’s race has been confirmed as the Teenage Cancer Trust. Jamie’s Farm is the Official Fun Run Charity, Bath Rugby Foundation has been confirmed as Local Charity of the Year and the RUH Forever Friends Appeal will return as the Featured Appeal for the annual race.

The BATHALF is one of the South West’s largest charity fundraising events and the 2014 event raised in excess of £2million for both local and national charities, once again increasing the fundraising total from the previous year.

Mel Taylor, Charity Director for the BATHALF said, “We are really excited to have these charities on board for the 2015 race, which include a combination of long standing relationships, and some more recent partnerships.

“Each year, runners in the BATHALF continue to impress us with their hard work and dedication to raising money for a whole host of worthwhile causes. Their ongoing commitment is demonstrated by the fact that the race still maintains its position as the largest one day fundraising event in the South West. Thanks to our runners and the support from their big hearted sponsors, the fundraising total has increased every year since 2000, and we hope to increase it even further in 2015”.

Teenage Cancer Trust was the Featured Appeal for the 2014 BATHALF and will now take the title as Lead Race Charity for 2015. It is the only UK charity dedicated to improving the quality of life and chances of survival for 13 to 24 year olds diagnosed with cancer. Teenage Cancer Trust funds and builds specialist units in NHS hospitals and provides dedicated staff, bringing young people together so they can be treated by teenage cancer experts.

Laura Perrett, Teenage Cancer Trust Fundraiser for the South West said: “It’s such an exciting privilege and opportunity for Teenage Cancer Trust to be part of one of the biggest half marathons in the UK. We rely on donations to fund all of our vital work and all money raised by our Team Teenage Cancer Trust runners will go towards supporting the seven young people who are diagnosed with cancer every day in the UK.”

This will be the first time that Bath Rugby Foundation, which aims to enhance young people’s lives through sport, has been named as one of the BATHALF’s featured charities.

Head of Sponsorship & Fundraising, Halena Coury commented: “Bath Rugby Foundation is thrilled to have been chosen as ‘Local Charity of the Year’ for the 2015 BATHALF. As a small charity, we are entirely dependent on fundraising or donations; historically the BATHALF has been a great fundraiser and profile raiser for us.  We are so pleased to confirm that we already have ex- Bath players David Barnes & Lee Mears signed up to run on our behalf, with many other ex players being coerced currently. We are really hoping that the 2015 BATHALF will prove to be a huge fundraising success to allow us to continue delivering our award winning Inclusion and education projects.”

The Forever Friends Appeal has helped secure over £17 million to provide state-of-the-art equipment and facilities at the Royal United Hospital (RUH), Bath. The charity hopes to get runners on board to raise funds for all areas of the hospital, to ensure the best possible level of acute care to all its patients.

Events and Community Officer for The Forever Friends Appeal, Emily Lynch, commented:  “We are thrilled to be chosen as Bath Half’s Featured Appeal Charity for 2015. As a local charity, The Forever Friends Appeal have a long history working with the team at Bath Half; each year the event gets bigger and bigger, giving us the chance to raise even more funds for the Royal United Hospital.   As Featured Appeal Charity for 2015, we hope that we can increase participant numbers, to help us reach our £8.5 million fundraising target to build a pioneering new cancer centre at the RUH- we really couldn’t achieve this goal without the wonderful support from the public as well as our runners who take on this 13.1 mile challenge!”

The popular BATHALF Family Fun Run will return again in 2015, and Jamie’s Farm will take the title as Official Fun Run Charity.

Jamie’s Farm transforms the lives of vulnerable children between the ages of 11-16 in challenging urban schools by providing a unique residential experience from a working farm outside of Bath. During their stay, children are involved with the daily running of a 60 acre livestock farm, enjoying seasonal activities from lambing to hay making, in addition to helping with the preparation of meals, gardening, carpentry, horse care, art and participating in a daily walk.

Jamie Feilden, Chief Executive Officer at Jamie’s Farm said: “In the last year we have had pupils who have been living in a car for the six months involved in prostitution; pupils who struggle to build trusting relationships with adults due to horrific levels of abuse and neglect; and pupils whose futures are in jeopardy due to involvement in gangs. By giving them a chance to reflect on their lives without negative influences and feel proud of achieving in real farm jobs in a beautiful countryside setting, they are able to commit to making sustained improvements in their lives. Our evaluation, and the fact that every one of our partner schools continues to use our high quality service, indicates that we are making a real difference for these young people.

“We are absolutely thrilled to have been chosen as the Bath Half Family Fun Run Charity 2015, and are really excited about working in partnership with Running High to get a team of our youngest supporters raising money for us in our beautiful local city. The money raised will help us to redevelop a second site, allowing us to double our impact on vulnerable young people”.

In addition to the featured charities, the BATHALF is working with more than 80 local and national charities this year, all of whom have places available for next year’s race.

Mel Taylor continued: “By working with such a wide variety of charities and causes, we hope that we can appeal to the hearts of all our runners to get behind them in 2015”.

For more details on any of the 2015 BATHALF official charities or how to run for charity, visit www.bathhalf.co.uk/charities.

The 2015 BATHALF will take place on Sunday 1st March. For more information or to secure your place, visit www.bathhalf.co.uk or call 01225 422255.