Two local residents are running to great lengths (182 miles to be precise) to raise money for The Living Room, a Stevenage-based charity that offers free counselling treatment to people suffering with addiction. Vicky Cottom, who is running the London Marathon for the first time, and George Livingston, who has entered the Marathon Des Sables ultra-marathon, are on course to raise over £3000 between them in sponsorship money.

Vicky, who works at The Lister hospital, and is running her first marathon, said; “I am so very pleased to be able to support The Living Room as I feel passionately about helping people close to us and within our local community. I work as a nurse within the NHS and see daily the effects of various addictions on individuals, families and the wider community. I also have a close friend who has benefited from the amazing help and support The Living Room gives. It is for these reasons I will pound the pavements on April 28th.

Experienced runner George, has managed to get a place in one of the world’s toughest races – a 250km, five-day ultra-marathon across the Sahara which begins on 5th April . “I know that a lot of people struggle with addition and that it can have a devastating impact on people’s lives. I wanted to do something for a local charity and The Living Room is a great cause. Their focus on support, not just on an individual struggling, but also on their family is something that felt like a great approach. I also wanted to find a relatively small charity where any fundraising could hopefully have a big impact. The Living Room has been an ideal choice and a very worthwhile cause,” said George.