Mum Jenny limbers up for challenge of a lifetime

Jenny Chantry
Jenny Chantry
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A BRAVE mum who had to re-learn to walk after a crippling childhood illness is gearing up to run the London Marathon.

Jenny Chantry, 36, was born with club foot - or talipes - in her left leg and needed a series of operations as a youngster, including one which put a metal plate in her leg. But after watching last year’s London Marathon, Jenny was inspired to take part in this year’s run, and hopes the gruelling challenge will inspire others to overcome their disabilities.

She told the Observer: “I had a series of operations up until I was 11 but I always had a positive, optimistic attitude. I saw the London Marathon on television last year and decided I was going to learn to run again. When I was a child I had to re-learn how to walk and I can still remember the agony - now I am going to run 26.2 miles. At first I couldn’t run for more than six minutes but I have been building up my stamina, and I am going to run, walk, hop or skip to raise as much money as I can.”

Miss Chantry, of Sedlescombe Road South, St Leonards, works as a counsellor now but has had various jobs in the past, including modelling and working at Harrods. She is running the April 17 race on behalf of Phab Kids, a charity which encourages disabled children to take part in activities alongside able-bodied youngsters, developing skills and breaking down barriers.

“I am doing it to show children with disabilities that they can achieve their dreams - not to be scared, not to be upset but to be strong,” she said. “I have never let my leg hold me back. It is going to be a massive effort but it is a case of mind over matter. I will be a bit nervous, but I am going to give it my best.

“I am aiming to raise £1,500 so I need all the help I can get,” she added.

Visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/JennyChantry to sponsor her.