A RUNNER from Offord D’Arcy has raised more than £20,000 for charity after tackling four marathons and a 20-hour running challenge,

A RUNNER from Offord D'Arcy has raised more than £20,000 for charity after completing four marathons and a 20-hour running challenge,

Civil engineer Paul Reader, 45, completed the last - and the hardest - of his runs in July, a 20-hour challenge to cover 100 miles of the hilly terrain along the South Downs.

Although he and his running partner, Ben Kay, were unable to complete the full 100 miles, the pair managed to run for a massive 15 HOURS covering 52 miles from their starting point in Winchester.

His efforts have raised £24,000 for Canine Partners, a national charity providing highly-trained assistance dogs to people with disabilities.

Paul's efforts started in 2006 when he collected sponsorship money to complete the London Marathon for the charity. He returned to the capital again for the next three years, raising further funds for the charity.

This year - Canine Partners' 20th anniversary - Paul took on a 20-hour challenge.

"It was a very arduous run," he told The Hunts Post. "It was hot and extremely hilly and we had to stop after about 15 hours. We started at 4am in Winchester and called in to Canine Partners' training centre which was on the route."

Paul, who had been looking for a charity to support at the London Marathon, said he was inspired to raise money for Canine Partners when he working in Guilford and had a chance meeting with Claire Graham at a pub

Claire, who is a wheelchair user, was with her canine partner Ulli who was trained to help her live more independently.

"I bumped into Claire at a pub and had a chat with her, It was evident that having Ulli had changed her life, especially when her husband was away."

Paul's runs have raised enough to train at least two puppies to become fully fledged canine partners.

INFORMATION: To donate to Paul Reader's fund for Canine Partners, visit www.justgiving.com/20HourChallenge