Berkshire firefighter takes on London Marathon in full fire kit

A Royal Berkshire firefighter will be running the London Marathon in full fire kite to raise money for charity. Nick Middleton is one of many fire and rescue heroes taking on the challenge, with some carrying 15kg breathing equipment and others using a Fred Flinstone-style mini fire engine. The money they raise on October 3 will be going to The Fire Fighters Charity, which offers lifelong support for members of the fire service community.

“I know so many people that have used the charity for things like shoulder injuries and problems with sleep,” said Nick Middleton said. “I would hope that if I ever needed to use it that I’d been able to contribute to it, or even more so, if any of my teammates needed help… we need to carry on supporting the charity. I want to do my part.”

Nick will be joined by Richard Green, from Hampshire and Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service, and Matt Hooper in a floorless mini truck. Paul Weller, a firefighter from West Sussex, has seen first-hand how the charity can help with both physical and mental health concerns. He said: “In the fire brigade environment, people are often worried how it looks to admit what they see as weaknesses.

“But with recent attention on mental health, people are opening up a lot more. “We need to do that. If I could go back in time and talk to myself back then, I would tell myself to ask for help sooner.

“Everyone is struggling, so we all have to admit when we need help. I’m so glad I did.” Kerry James, fundraising manager at The Fire Fighters Charity, said: “After what has been a particularly difficult year for fundraising and training, it’s amazing to see so many runners going the extra mile to support us this year.

“I wish all of you an amazing experience.

Enjoy every moment of the crowds cheering you on and a huge thank you to all of you for raising these much-needed funds, which will go directly towards supporting the health and wellbeing of our fire service community.”