Man runs up mountain twice for hospice

22nd July 2019

A man who challenged himself to run up a mountain twice has completed the feat in support of a hospice close to his heart.

Ian Newell, from Worcester, finished the gruelling Fan Dance challenge in under four hours to raise £977 for St Richard’s Hospice.

The challenge saw the 42-year-old run a 24-kilometre route, climbing the 2,907ft Pen y Fan mountain in Wales not once – but twice.

He was running in memory of a family member and friend who were both cared for by the hospice.

“It was a truly awesome, inspiring, humbling and, at the end, emotional experience that pushed me well beyond what I thought I was capable of and that heat was something else,” said Mr Newell, who lives in Droitwich.

“Thank you to everyone that sponsored me and gave me that little extra motivation when I needed it most.”

The challenge, which took place in June, saw him ascend the peak – the highest in south Wales – before descending and returning the same way. The Fan Dance is famed for forming part of the SAS selection process.

Mr Newell said: “St Richard’s Hospice provided the most amazing end of life care for my wife’s gran at her home and also for our friend at the hospice itself, both who sadly passed away last year,” he explained.

“I want other families to be able to receive the same free care we did at the time when you most need it and that can only happen through donations and fundraising, so here I am.”

Alison Parkes, a fundraiser at St Richard’s Hospice, said: “We are blown away by Ian’s incredible achievement in support of St Richard’s.

“To take on such a tough challenge while raising a fantastic amount for our care is inspiring. On behalf of all of us at the hospice, a huge ‘thank you’ to Ian for all his hard work.”

To donate to Mr Newell, visit

St Richard’s Hospice cares for adults with a serious progressive illness, improving their quality of life from diagnosis, during treatment and to their last days. It also supports their loved ones.

Each year the hospice team supports more than 3,300 patients, family members and bereaved people in Worcestershire.

St Richard’s is an independent charity and relies on donations and gifts in Wills for the majority of its income with 22% funded by the NHS.

The hospice is also raising funds for the Build 2020 Appeal and is part way through developing a bigger hospice, enabling more patients and families to be cared for in Worcestershire. The total cost for expanding and redeveloping the existing building in Wildwood Drive, Worcester, is £5.3m.

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

During this challenging time, we are doing our utmost to continue caring for the patients and loved ones who need us most.

The way we work has been adapted, with many of our services delivered remotely – such as over the phone, or by video call. And we are working closely with other health care professionals in Worcestershire to share knowledge and expertise at this time.

Latest changes at St Richard’s Hospice

  • In-patient Unit: To protect patients and staff  from the spread of the virus, we are following national guidance and therefore it is with regret we are not able to accept visitors. Please do not hesitate to contact the In-patient Unit with any questions on 01905 958163. Thank you for your understanding at this difficult time.
  • Community Nursing: Community services continue to operate, with a mixture of hands-on care and remote support.
  • Living Well and Family Support Services: Switched to virtual model, with care given remotely over the phone or via video call.
  • Shops: All 19 of our shops and warehouse are temporarily closed. Please do not leave donations outside our shops, as we are unable to collect them at this time.
  • Fundraising: All hospice organised events until the end of August have been postponed. If you wish to support us, please donate to our Resilience Fund.

Please do not visit St Richard’s Hospice if you have a high temperature or new, continuous cough. If you have these symptoms, please stay at home and self-isolate for seven days. See NHS advice on coronavirus.

Thank you for your support and understanding at this difficult time.