A PEEBLESSHIRE woman completed the London Marathon in memory of her "beautiful mum" who passed away following a battle with cancer.

Fiona Kennedy, from Peebles, ran her first marathon in 2019 to mark her mother completing 10 years of treatment for soft tissue cancer and to raise money for Sarcoma UK – the charity which had supported her mum throughout her treatment.

After completing the Edinburgh race in May 2019 and raising £5,000, Fiona's mum passed away at the age of 67 in September 2019.

"Mum’s ethos meant that she took the years of surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and drug trials in her stride," said Fiona. "She continued to travel, play an active part in her grandchildren’s lives and was a much-loved wife, mum, sister, and aunt."

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Although she'd sworn to never run again, Fiona, her aunt, uncle and cousins agreed to run a marathon in her mum's memory.

The family promptly signed up to run the London Marathon 2020 for Sarcoma UK.

However, the coronavirus pandemic meant last year's marathon was postponed.

But despite lockdown, Fiona continued to train for when the marathon was rearranged for October this year.

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"I swore I would never run again after Edinburgh and I crossed the line in London two years later having raised a further £7,000 for Sarcoma UK," said Fiona.

"I have been out running in my finishers t-shirt twice since completing London, and I have felt a real sense of accomplishment pounding the pavements in that prestigious t-shirt.

"Crossing the finish line was a huge sense of relief.

"My cousin Lucy and I crossed it together hand in hand and promptly burst into tears.

"The sense of achievement was felt immediately, not least because the staff, marshals and volunteers were amazing in their support and care.

"The congratulations came from runners, supports and strangers.

"Mum wasn’t at the finish line in London but I’m sure she would have been amazed and proud in equal measures."

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Fiona is now looking forward to returning to sports she enjoys, but can also see herself joining in park runs.

She said: "I am looking forward to returning to other forms of exercise that I love, but I do see myself factoring in the odd Parkrun to tick my legs over.

"In terms of fundraising – I will have a lifelong affiliation with Sarcoma UK.

"Mum wanted to do more in terms of contributing to research, raising awareness and rising funds, and this is a duty I have inherited.

"I will continue to look for ways to support the charity I have such fondness for."