London Marathon runner inspired by her father for big race

Daisy Clarke is running the London Marathon for the BHF as her father, Jeff, had a heart attack. Pic

Daisy Clarke is running the London Marathon for the BHF as her father, Jeff, had a heart attack. Pictured with her dad. Picture: Supplied by the BHF - Credit: Archant

A north Norfolk woman whose father had a heart attack is running the London Marathon for the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

Daisy Clarke, 22, from Hevingham, has arranged a charity concert and coffee morning to help her reach the £2,500 fundraising target.

She said: 'My dad Jeff was at work when it happened in November 2014. He was just 57. He didn't realise it was a heart attack. He felt unwell and drove himself home. It was only when my mum saw how ill he was that she rang for an ambulance. That probably saved his life.

'My mum called me at university and the first thing she said was 'are you with anyone?' I immediately knew bad news was coming.

'Dad was in hospital for four days. He had a couple of stents fitted in his arteries to restore the blood flow to his heart.

'After coming out of hospital, he's made a good recovery. He went to cardiac rehabilitation which has really helped him, and dad's fitter now than he's ever been.'

She said she couldn't run a mile before she got her place on the 26-mile London Marathon, on April 28.

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She added: 'I never thought I'd be able to complete a marathon, but my training runs have been getting longer and longer.

'It's been really tough, but while I've been training I've thought of dad and that has kept me going when I thought about quitting.

'I can't thank the BHF enough. Their research is the reason dad is still here.'

Dawne Hart, fundraising manager at the BHF, said: 'Without the fundraising efforts of people like Daisy our scientists wouldn't be able to continue their vital work. Thanks to our research, more people than ever survive heart and circulatory diseases.'

The concert and coffee morning are at Aylsham Parish Church on March 23.

The coffee morning is between 10am and 12pm, and the concert is at 7pm. The programme includes opera and songs from musicals performed by three local choristers.

Tickets cost £7 and are available on the door, or in advance by calling 01603 755258 or 754466.