Tim goes round in circles as a tribute to his neighbour

Tim Mazdon sprang into action when the 2.6 Challenge was launched – he ran around his home 260 times and raised more than £1,600 for Bowel & Cancer Research.

His marathon effort was a tribute to his much-loved neighbour, Mark Lowen, who was being treated for bowel cancer when he contracted Covid-19 and lost his fight for life soon after. Tim said:

Mark was was fighting a brave battle but the virus took him far too early and it was a shock to hear of his passing - he will be sorely missed

The 51-year-old dad set out on his challenge at 10am whilst neighbours in Kidlington formed a social-distancing cheering club on garden chairs or perched on stepladders and shouted encouragement over their garden fence.

Mark’s family next door waved pom poms and made posters saying ‘Go, Tim, Go!’ and a ripple of applause echoed around the close.

Tim’s six-year-old son Felix joined him for both the first 26 laps and the last one whilst his partner Sarah Nelson stood ready with a glass of Champagne when he crossed the finish line after two hours and 17km.

  

“It was all good,” said Tim. “I was a bit worried about my hips – I had two operations in January and exercise has been on the back burner for a while – but all I’ve got is one blister and my rib cage is a bit sore for some unknown reason.

I’m glad to have been able to do something positive to support Mark’s family. He was having chemotherapy but he was an incredibly positive guy who just got on with life.

“I am also one of those people who suddenly realised that charities will be struggling in these strange times so the two things just came together.”

Mark, 68, leaves his wife Christine, four sons, a daughter and four grandchildren. The couple have also been foster carers for many years.

Tim’s employers, Microsoft, have generously to match-fund the amount raised which could take the total well past £3,000.

A spokesperson for Bowel & Cancer Research thanked Tim and Felix for their support.

“We are deeply sorry that Mark Lowen lost his life. Our mission is to ensure that no one should die of bowel cancer in future and we can only do that with the help of our fantastic fundraisers,” she said.

“The coronavirus has made this year particularly challenging for all charities and we are therefore doubly grateful that Tim and Felix stepped up to help.”

Anyone who wants to support Tim can do so at uk.virginmoneygiving.com/TimMazdon