Daughter’s London Marathon tribute for dad

A LOVING daughter whose father died suddenly has pledged to run the London Marathon in his memory.

Family and friends were devastated after Allan Bicknell from Eaton Socon collapsed outside the Old Bridge Hotel on Huntingdon’s ring road on his way to work on August 9.

The 60-year-old, who suffered from suspected heart disease, left behind wife Sue and children Mark, Sally and Jane.

His daughter Sally Gale, 31, is determined to remember her father in a positive way and so will be joining thousands of other runners on April 17 to take part in the race.

The mother-of-two hopes to raise �4,000 for her father’s favourite charity, the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI).

Sally said: “After dad’s death, I just wanted something positive to focus on.

“My dad loved the sea. Every photo I have of him is him standing at the seaside. As children we visited most of the RNLI stations in the country. He had a fascination for it and would drive up with my mum to Huntstanton for the day.”

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She added: “We did not have flowers at dad’s funeral, instead we raised �800 for the RNLI.”

The family will also be remembering Mr Bicknell by unveiling a bench in his memory at his favourite spot in Huntstanton on what would have been his 61st birthday, Sunday February 27.

And on Saturday, February 26, Sally has also organised a fundraising buffet, disco and auction at the Carriage House in Higham Ferrers.

Among the goodies up for grabs are signed photographs of Cheryl Cole and Sir Stephen Regrave, a weekend break in the Cotswolds and two tickets for a return flight with Monarch Airlines.

Mr Bicknell’s former employer Marshall Leasing, where he worked for 16 years, have donated �250 towards Sally’s marathon bid, bringing her current fundraising total to �250.

In the meantime Sally, who is an account manager for Green Graphics, has been training six days a week to prepare for the challenge. She has already lost four stone and aims to lose another three, before the day.

“Training has been going well and I am feeling in great shape. The more training I do the more I realise what a massive challenge I have set myself, and just how far 26 miles is.

“But I will continue to train hard as one way or another I will cross the finish line not only for my dad but also this great cause.”

INFORMATION: To sponsor Sally go to www.virginmoneygiving.com/sallygale or e-mail sallygale@live.co.uk