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​Local stroke survivor’s Resolution to Run for Stroke Association

Press release -

​Local stroke survivor’s Resolution to Run for Stroke Association

A Blackburn running group is on a fundraising mission at the Stroke Association’s Resolution Run at Stanley Park on Sunday 14 April, after one of their members survived a stroke.

More than 30 members of the Progression Group and Couch to 5k program in Blackburn will take on the 15km run for the charity, inspired by Chris Jolliffe, 49.

In August 2017, Chris, a father-of-three, was enjoying a holiday on the Amalfi Coast with his wife Louise, when he woke up on the last day and found he was struggling to speak. He said: “I knew something wasn’t right. I went to brush my teeth and the water spilled down my face. I felt really disorientated. Although I thought I might have had a stroke, I put the thought to the back of my mind and carried on.”

Chris continued onto the airport, despite feeling really unwell. After attempting to sleep it off when he arrived home, he dialled 111 in the morning and was in Royal Blackburn Hospital within half an hour, where he was told he’d had a stroke.

Chris said: “When we got home I’d be fine, but of course I wasn’t. I spent four days on the stroke ward in hospital and I’ve been extremely lucky. My speech was affected for a while, but it’s now improved, and fortunately I haven’t been left with any lasting effects. I returned to work as a senior IT manager for QVC on a phased return, and I’m now working full time.

“The Stroke Association’s Stroke Recovery Service was there for me after my stroke to help with information and advice. Part of my recovery plan with the Stroke Association was to do regular exercise sessions in the gym with a specialist trainer. I also now volunteer with the service in Blackburn, visiting other stroke survivors on the ward and at home to show there is life after stroke.”

Chris started the Couch to 5k plan in 2018 took on the Stroke Association’s 5km Resolution Run at Stanley Park that year, alongside his wife Louise.

He added: “After that I decided to progress to the next level; 10k. I joined the running group where I met a group of very special people. The group has a special bond. They feel like my extended family; we all support each other, and they understand my motivation. I completed the program culminating with my first 10k in June.

“When I entered the 2019 Resolution Run I wanted to push myself further and so I entered the 15k race with my wife Louise. To my surprise and joy my running group also decided to join us so we can support each other as we work towards our next milestone which is the Liverpool half-marathon in May!

“One of our members works for The Cardboard Box Company, based in Accrington. They have kindly said that they will match the amount we raise, which means whatever people donate is doubled. We’re very grateful for their support.”

The Progression Group trains together twice a week on Monday and Thursday evenings, while they also have a group which takes part in a social run on Saturday mornings to complement the program.

Claire Fahey is the group leader, adding: “My father is also a stroke survivor and strokes seem to have been quite a regular occurrence on his side of the family. It’s a word that I can remember hearing from a very young age. After one particular progression run early in 2018, I was approached by Chris who told me he was recovering from a stroke. Chris is my inspiration for organising and setting up this fundraising group and we’re thrilled he will be running with us as part of the team on the day.”

Rebecca Owen, Regional Fundraiser at the Stroke Association, said: “A Resolution Run is exactly that – a resolution for the New Year that counts. It's the ideal event for people in Blackpool who want to do something fun together, while getting more active in 2019.

“In the UK there are around 100,000 strokes every year. Our latest research (i) shows that by training and taking part in a Resolution Run, you are helping to lower your stroke risk. The funds raised by each runner means we can reach out to more stroke survivors and their families to offer the support that they may need to rebuild their lives. On behalf of the thousands of stroke survivors and their loved ones that we support every year, I just want to say thank you.”

Research from the charity shows that many strokes could be prevented if people made some simple lifestyle changes. Introducing physical activity into your routine is just one aspect of a healthier lifestyle required to reduce your risk of stroke. Monitoring (and managing) your blood pressure, eating a more balanced diet and stopping smoking can all significantly reduce your stroke risk. The money raised through the Resolution Run in Blackpool will help the Stroke Association to fund vital research and support people affected by stroke in the North West.

Last year participants raised over £633,000 for the Stroke Association. This year the charity hopes to raise over £850,000 to continue supporting stroke survivors and their families throughout the UK.

To sponsor the group, visit: http://www.justgiving.com/grouprunprogressionteam.

The Resolution Run in Blackpool will take place at Stanley Park on Sunday 14 April 2019. Entry fee is just £16. All runners receive a technical running t-shirt and medal. For more information about entering or volunteering at the Resolution Run, visit www.resolutionrun.org.ukemail resolution@stroke.org.uk or call 0300 330 0740.

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  • A stroke is a brain attack which happens when the blood supply to the brain is cut off, caused by a clot or bleeding in the brain. There are more than 100,000 strokes in the UK each year; that is around one stroke every five minutes. There are over 1.2 million people in the UK living with the effects of stroke. 
  • Stroke Association is a charity. We believe in life after stroke and together we can conquer stroke. We work directly with stroke survivors and their families and carers, with health and social care professionals and with scientists and researchers. We campaign to improve stroke care and support people to make the best recovery they can. We fund research to develop new treatments and ways of preventing stroke. The Stroke Helpline (0303 303 3100) provides information and support on stroke. More information can be found at www.stroke.org.uk
  • Press contacts

    Angela Macleod

    Angela Macleod

    Press contact Communications Officer Scotland press and Stroke Association research communications 0131 555 7244
    Laura Thomas

    Laura Thomas

    Press contact Communications Officer Wales 07776508594

    Scott Weddell

    Press contact PR Manager Stroke policy, and Northern Ireland activities 02075661528
    Ken Scott

    Ken Scott

    Press contact Press Officer North of England and Midlands 0115 778 8429
    Daisy Dighton

    Daisy Dighton

    Press contact Press Officer London and East of England 02079401358
    Martin Oxley

    Martin Oxley

    Press contact Press Officer South of England 0207 566 1548
    Sokina Miah

    Sokina Miah

    Press contact PR Manager Fundraising and local services 0207 566 0337
    Katie Taylor

    Katie Taylor

    Press contact Head of PR & Media This team is not responsible for booking marketing materials or advertising
    Out of hours contact

    Out of hours contact

    Press contact Media queries 07799 436008

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    The UK's leading stroke charity helping people to rebuild their lives after stroke

    The Stroke Association. We believe in life after stroke. That’s why we campaign to improve stroke care and support people to make the best possible recovery. It’s why we fund research to develop new treatments and ways to prevent stroke. The Stroke Association is a charity. We rely on your support to change lives and prevent stroke. Together we can conquer stroke.

    Stroke Association
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    EC1V 2PR London
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