Paul, 49, of Harold Hill, prepares for season of ‘ultra-runs’ for kids’ charity Starlight

A father-of-three from Harold Hill is gearing up for a season of charity “ultra-runs” that will see him attempt a 60-mile route considered the hardest of its kind in the country.

As well as the “Ultra Trail South West”, which is billed as the most difficult point-to-point non-stop foot race in Britain, 49-year-old Paul Hartshorn will take on eight other routes between October and June, all of which top the 30-mile mark.

He will be raising money for Starlight, a charity that entertains and grants wishes to sick children in hospitals and hospice care.

“I’ve been training very hard over the last four months to get myself in top condition for these events, as failure is just not an option,” he said.

Paul’s daredevil training included a muddy 12-mile, 30-obstacle assault course in Northamptonshire, which he completed in May. The intimidating course – which Paul says landed 400 people in hospital – included an ice bath and a burning field.

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Paul, who works as a night technician for the Docklands Light Railway, has also been training with thrice-weekly runs of up to 30 miles – including the odd 15-mile jaunt in the middle of the night.

“Sometimes when I finish my shift I get home and go for a quiet 10- to 15-mile run before going to bed,” said the dedicated Tarnworth Road resident.

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To help Paul raise money for Starlight, visit

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