A PARAMEDIC from Weston is preparing to tackle this year's London Marathon to raise money for a vital cause.

Darran Griffiths, who is based at Weston Ambulance Station, is set to take on the 26-mile mammoth feat in aid of Weston Hospicecare.

For the last 14 years, Darran has been responding to 999 calls and providing life-saving care to his local community as part of his work for the South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust. 

Speaking about what motivates him, Darran, who is also a Hornets Rugby Football Club player, said: "I have a close connection with Weston Hospicecare as some of my family and friends, including the late Hornets club legend Phil Hogarth, received wonderful care and support from the charity.

“In my role as a paramedic, I have also had the privilege of working with many of the professionals at the hospice and know what incredible support they offer our local community.

"This marathon has been on my radar for a long time, and I think the challenge will be the hardest I have attempted.

"I feel privileged to be representing the wonderful team at the hospice and I would be very grateful for any donation, big or small, to help support their fantastic work."

This isn't the first time that Darran has raised money for the charity. Two years ago, he raised £3,500 by swimming the English Channel.

He hopes to raise £5,000 in the marathon.

Darran's Just Giving page reads: "Jordan and I have embarked on a brilliant challenge to raise £5,000 for Weston Hospicare by running the London Marathon in April next year.

"This has been on our bucket list for a long time and with five months to go, it’s all starting to get very real!

"After having family and friends receive their amazing care, and the honour of occasionally working alongside some of the amazing professionals there, we are grateful for their incredible work and feel passionately about supporting them by fundraising however we can."

A Weston Hospicecare spokesperson writes: "Receiving an end-of-life diagnosis can be difficult, not just for the patient but also for their loved ones.

"At Weston Hospicecare, our team of palliative care experts is dedicated to working together to provide specialist support.

"Our social, emotional, psychological, spiritual and physical care helps guide people through one of the most difficult experiences they will ever face.

"With only 20% of our funding coming from the NHS, we have to raise £4 million each year to fund our care - something that's only made possible by our community."