Roller-skating family from Little Paxton to raise funds for cancer charities

At their home in Little Paxton, are (l-r) Kayleigh, dad Ian, and Christohper Rhodes-Elson, who are d

At their home in Little Paxton, are (l-r) Kayleigh, dad Ian, and Christohper Rhodes-Elson, who are doing a sponsored roller skating event to raise money for charity - Credit: Archant

A family from Little Paxton is taking part in a marathon sponsored roller skate in memory of wife and mother, Michaela Rhodes-Elson, and to raise money for cancer charities.

Ian Rhodes-Elson, 47, son Christopher, 13, and daughter Kayleigh, 11, will be skating their way around Goodwood race circuit near Chichester as part of the South Coast Roll on Sunday, May 31.

They are raising money for Cancer Research UK and St John’s Hospice, near Bedford, where Ian’s wife, Michaela, died in 2010, only eight weeks after being diagnosed with a brain tumour.

Ian plans to do 11 laps of the 2.4-mile track, which is approximately the distance of a full marathon, though he’s not expecting quite as much from the children

“I went to the South Coast Roll with friends last year, just for fun,” said Ian. “This time I decided to do the marathon challenge and thought, ‘Why not raise money for charity at the same time?’”

So far, the family has raised £375 for the hospice and £175 for Cancer Research, but Ian would like to reach £500 each for the charities.

“Kayleigh went to a roller skating party a few years ago and loved it. It’s now something we’ve taken to doing as a family.”

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The Rhodes-Elsons are now regulars at One Leisure in St Neots on a Saturday, where Kayleigh and her dad take part in the technical sessions and Christopher plays roller hockey for St Neots Sharks.

The circuit at Goodwood is said to be gently undulating and reasonably level, though Ian admits it’s not as smooth as he’d like. “You come away shaken and stirred.

“The plan is to do it in one hit, then collapse. Some people stop and have picnics during the day, but I don’t think my legs would work again if I did that.”

Sadly, the following Monday is a school day, so whatever happens, Ian faces a three-and-a-half-hour drive back to Little Paxton.

INFORMATION: Donations can be made at