London Marathon: Derek, 73, taking on challenge for fourth consecutive year

Derek James

Derek James - Credit: Tom Morton/Richard House

Most 73-year-olds would have hung up their trainers a long time ago, but not Derek James.

He is taking on his fourth consecutive London Marathon in aid of Richard House Children’s Hospice, where he volunteers as a gardener.

“This will be my eighth marathon in total, and I did my first in 1985,” he said.

“A few years ago, Richard House were holding a pasta party for their marathon runners and I though, ‘I want to be a part of that’.

“So the next year I signed up for a place with them, and I enjoyed it and got a good time for my age so I decided to do it again.”

You may also want to watch:

Derek, who lives in Silvertown, has been training regularly, including taking part in one run a week with the Barking Road Runners.

The former Pretoria Boys’ School and Eastlea Community School teacher said he was aiming for a time of around four hours.

Most Read

“It might be closer to 4:30” he admitted.

“My best time was 3:04, but that was a long time ago.”

Visit to sponsor Derek.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter