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Reading resident to go the extra 26 miles for the Stroke Association

Press release   •   Feb 12, 2020 10:43 GMT

Peter Hurrell, 24, is taking on the Virgin Money London Marathon for the Stroke Association on Sunday 26 April 2020 after his Dad had four strokes in just one week.

Peter and his Dad, Gerry, were on a weekend break in Bath with the rest of the family at the time of Gerry’s stroke. Gerry was unable to speak or move his left hand side and was rushed to hospital where doctors used blood thinners to reduce the clots. While Gerry initially recovered quickly following the treatment, tragically he would go on to have another Ischemic stroke the next day and two Hemorrhagic strokes days later while still in hospital.

Gerry had lost use of all his limbs, the ability to eat and drink and couldn’t communicate. He remained in Bath Hospital for several weeks prior to being transferred to a hospital nearer his home in Hertfordshire. This was followed by a further six at a specialist hospital for intensive rehabilitation before being allowed home – thankfully he had no further strokes during this time.

Peter said: “I think the worst thing about Dad’s strokes and the condition in general for us, is that you have no time to adjust, things changed literally overnight and we were constantly worried about what would happen next.

“Throughout everything, my Dad has had an inspiring determination to improve his condition. This along with the incredible support of doctors, nurses and physios, to name a few, has led to him being able to walk, talk and eat properly again.

“That being said there is a long way to go, the Stroke Association has found that survivors only receive around a third of the recommended five sessions each week. Almost two thirds of stroke survivors leave hospital with a disability, therefore access to rehabilitation therapy can be truly life-changing, for them and their families. My father and I'm sure many other stroke survivors have resorted to paying privately for therapy as they fear for their future. But, rehabilitation therapy is an absolute necessity for stroke recovery, it should not be a luxury available to only those who can afford it.

“I thought training would be tough but that was an understatement, I definitely have a new found respect for runners and I’m only a couple of months into training really.”

Peter’s Dad, Gerry, added: “Even now two and half years later I still feel improvements are being made. I don't think for a second I've finished improving.

"Unfortunately, because of the depressive nature of strokes, I think an awful lot of people give up too easily, too quickly. I'm not blaming them but I think they don't have the support network around them, either through family or through physiotherapists - you really need that!"

Abbey Thorogood, Events Officer at the Stroke Association, said: “There are around 100,000 strokes every year in the UK and 1.2 million people are living with the devastating impact of stroke. We believe that everyone deserves to live the best life they can after stroke and we’re grateful to Peter for taking on this famous challenge to raise vital funds for the Stroke Association.

“A stroke can happen to anyone at any time and it turns lives upside down. However, with the support of people likePeter can help more stroke survivors and their families as they rebuild their lives.”

To sponsor Peter, please visit

The Stroke Association is also looking to recruit people for its cheer squads at Canary Wharf and Tower Bridge Road.

“Any amount of time you can spare on the day to support and motivate the amazing runners, would be greatly appreciated,” said Abbey Thorogood.

“If you’re free on Sunday 26 Apriland would like to join the #TeamStroke cheer squad, please email:”

For more information about stroke and the support services for survivors and carers visit or call the Stroke Helpline on 0303 3033 100.


For more information, please contact: Ken Scott, PR Officer on 0115 7788429 or

  • Stroke strikes every five minutes in the UK and it changes lives in an instant.
  • The Stroke Association is a charity working across the UK to support people to rebuild their lives after stroke. We believe that everyone deserves to live the best life they can after stroke. From local support services and groups, to online information and support, anyone affected by stroke can visit or call our dedicated Stroke Helpline on 0303 3033 100 to find out about support available locally.
  • Our specialist support, research and campaigning are only possible with the courage and determination of the stroke community and the generosity of our supporters. With more donations and support, we can help rebuild even more lives.
  • You can follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.