TWO families that had children who were stillborn are organising a charity trail run on Jersey’s east coast for the fourth time.
The event is being held in support of Philip’s Footprints, an organisation that supports families who have lost a baby.
The Seymour Sprint has become an annual fixture since it started in 2020, just before the Island first went into lockdown.
Helier de Veulle, a parent whose child was stillborn and who supports the charity, created the event to help boost his charity fundraising for the 2020 London Marathon.
That marathon was cancelled – but the Seymour Sprint went ahead, and it has been held every year since.
Participants in previous years had ‘wet feet, but grins like Cheshire cats’, said Mr de Veulle.
The run is scheduled for 22 April and there are two distance options. The longer route is 10km and takes entrants from Longbeach to Seymour Tower and back again. The organisers say that the route will have plenty of obstacles such as puddles and rugged terrain, with runners being reminded to watch out for the incoming tide.
For those wanting something shorter, the ‘dry-feet option’ covers a distance of 6km from Longbeach to Seymour slip and back.
Jo Nash, the founder of Philip’s Footprints, said: ‘We are delighted to have the Seymour Sprint as part of our annual fundraising calendar and on a beautiful and iconic part of Jersey’s coastline.
‘[Members of] our community are always such great supporters of charity and sporting events and we look forward to a great turnout as people take the opportunity to enjoy this unique event, whilst supporting a charity at the same time.’
Mrs Nash and her husband, Paul, started the charity Philip’s Footprints after losing their son Philip, who was stillborn in 2008. Mr de Veulle and his wife Vicky’s child was stillborn in 2007.
The two couples met through a support group and Mr de Veulle is now a supporter of the charity. His wife is a trustee.
The organisation supports families who have lost a baby or child and funds training, equipment and information to support pregnant women and make pregnancies safer. Both race courses will be monitored by marshals. Dogs and children over the age of ten are allowed to take part, but they must be accompanied by an adult.
Runners should sign up for the event by 21 April by registering online at race-nation.co.uk/register/philips-footprints.