A GROUP of Wirral mums who found friendship through a keep-fit boot camp will be putting their new-found fitness to the test this weekend when they take on a military style obstacle course to raise money for Team George.

The group of 12 women, who live in various parts of the borough, first met six months ago when they signed up for Darren’s Boot Camp – owned by Darren Lavery.

Now, the women - who describe themselves as being the "most unfit people you could have met" - are gearing up to tackle the 10km Born Survivor race in Cumbria on Saturday in the hope of raising as much money as possible the Wirral-based charity.

Four-year-old George Johnson has spent most of his short life travelling back and forth from Great Ormond Street where he has undergone 75 operations for the undiagnosed condition that affects his digestive system.

The rare condition means the Wallasey tot struggles to eat or drink and has to be fed via a tube through his heart, with the Johnson family currently fundraising for a trip to Ohio to see a consultant who they hope will finally be able to shed some light on George’s condition.

Mother-of-two Natasha Shudall is just one of those taking part on Saturday and says that as well as helping to raise awareness and money for Team George, preparing for Born Survivor has also helped the group to become close friends and to shed unwanted weight.

Wirral Globe:

TRAINING HARD: The gruelling training regime has led to close-knit friendships within the group. Photo by Stuart Bogg Imaging.

The 40-year-old said: “We were the most unfit people you could have met.

“But one of the women has actually lost six stone since we signed up for the boot camp.

“We didn’t know each other before we signed up but we have become a team and we’ve all been spurring each other on.”

After signing up for the 10km course – which includes barbed wire, high walls, water, electricity and mud – they tasked themselves with choosing a worthwhile cause.

When one of the mums mentioned Team George, Natasha said it was a “no brainer”.

She said: “As much pain as we are going to put our bodies through, George has to go through that on a daily basis.

“As mums, it was a no brainer. This little boy needs as much help as we can offer.”

Wirral Globe:

BOOT CAMP: The Wirral mums have been training alongside Darren Lavery, who owns Darren's Boot Camp. Photo by Stuart Bogg Imaging.

The group – who have been training in Wirral’s parks and beaches in preparation for the challenge - hopes to raise £1,000 for Team George and judging by the sponsorship they have secured so far, they are on track to hit their target.

“We’ve all got our own sponsorship forms that we have been handing out and I think we will do it,” added Natasha.

The race is taking at Lowther Castle, Cumbria on Saturday, April 5 and includes barbed wire, high walls, water, electricity and mud.

Wirral Globe:

The group hopes to raise £1,000 for Team George. Photo by Stuart Bogg Imaging.


Team George has been the focus of many fundraising events in recent months, with Wirral mum Kerry Hook giving herself a permanent reminder of the daily battle George faces when she had the charity logo tattooed on her arm.

Last month also saw Liverpool-based Warmer Energy Services raise £767 for Team George through a five-a-side football tournament and charity raffle.

For more information on the campaign, join the ‘Team George’ page on Facebook.