A determined group of Slimming World members have smashed their third double marathon in 12 months to raise funds for a local charity.

For over a year, the group has been supporting the Heswall Disabled Children’s Holiday Fund who provide a camp, normally held at the specialist Barnstondale Activity Centre on the Wirral.

They cater for up to 30 children each year, free of charge and have been awarded The Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service, the MBE for volunteer groups.

Catherine, a Slimming World 'Heswall Heroes' marathoneer, said, “Mental health has been a huge topic this year and this was a great way of coming together as a team and having some fun.

"Seeing everyone get involved was a great morale booster - it may have been raining, but that just added to the fun!”

When COVID-19 hit, the camp became virtual to reach a greater number of families, providing vital support for 60 children in their own homes during a difficult moment.

Not to be outdone, the Slimming World ‘Heswall Heroes’ also took their fundraising virtual, coming together on social media in December, April and June to either walk for 30 minutes or run 5k, for a total of 52 miles, passing on a virtual ‘baton’ of their before and after race photos.

Slimmer Bev, who has lost 3st 11lb with the group, agreed. She said: “Our group has given me the body confidence to tackle my limiting belief that I could not run. I was very proud to be part of our marathon team and to embrace my inner runner!”

Wendy, Ronnie and Joan have all reached their dream target weight with Slimming World. Experts in making delicious meals without counting a single calorie thanks to Food Optimising, Slimming World’s flexible eating plan, they have all made Body Magic - moderate, regular activity alongside their healthy eating plan - part of their daily routine which has helped to keep them within their target range, even through lockdown.

Sue, who has lost 4 stone with the Heswall group said: “It was heart warming that so many members took part in the marathon, spurred on by the social media photos that just kept coming all day as each person virtually passed the baton. We may have been apart, but we were all together.”

Their Consultant Ria Barrington - who herself has lost 2 stone - is proud of her Heroes group for their commitment to keeping healthy and losing weight throughout the pandemic.

She said: “It’s been a strange few months and my members have continued to show just what can be done when we come together – both in terms of achieving something amazing and supporting each other and great causes through difficult and challenging times.

"We hope our campaign will inspire lots of people in the local area to join their local group and discover the pleasure and the benefits of activity so we can all wave goodbye to coronavirus looking and feeling stronger, fitter and slimmer.

"The next Heswall Heroes Marathon will be taking place later in the year - we can’t wait!”

To make a donation to Heswall Children’s Holiday Fund, visit their Just Giving site justgiving.com/hdchf/Donate

To find your local Slimming World group, visit slimmingworld.co.uk