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Runner pledges marathon effort for Barnardo’s after cancer treatment

Release Date: 09 Apr 2018

A runner who adopted two children through Barnardo’s is determined to complete the Virgin Money London Marathon, despite still recovering from cancer.

Brad Owens is running the Marathon for Barnardo's

Brad Owens went through several rounds of chemotherapy and radiotherapy after developing stage 2 Hodgkin lymphoma in February 2017, just two years after he and his husband Tim started a family by adopting their two boys, aged seven and eight.

It has been a steady road back to good health for the IT account manager, who works for Dolphin Dynamics in Upper Richmond Road, as the 36-year-old builds up his stamina before the main event on Sunday, April 22.

This will be the second time Brad has run the marathon for Barnardo’s – he also completed it in 2015, just after he and Tim adopted the boys, as a way of giving back to the children’s charity for being so supportive.

Brad said:

It’s been a tough year and after coming through chemotherapy and radiotherapy I wanted to focus on something else, so I said if I felt better I’d run the marathon again.

Barnardo’s has been fantastic. Through the whole adoption process, our social worker really went the extra mile, and they’ve been great ever since so I want to give something back.

I can’t wait to do the London Marathon - finishing it is such a good feeling. My training has been quite slow but I’m getting there and starting to do longer runs. After everything I’ve been through I finally feel like I’m back to normal, and that makes me really happy.

Brad lives in Mile End and will run the event with two close friends, Oliver and Steven, who are also raising funds to help Barnardo’s support the UK’s most vulnerable children and young people, including those who are just leaving care or have experienced child sexual exploitation.

Brad’s friend and fellow marathon runner Oliver Way said:

When I visited Brad throughout his treatment he has always kept his character and constantly been positive, and we know that his boys had a huge part to play in this. With everything going on, Barnardo's have been there not only to help with the children but to help with supporting Brad through his recovery.

Lynn Gradwell, Director of Barnardo’s in London, said:

Brad has clearly been through so much this year, so it’s fantastic that on top of everything he has committed to running the marathon for Barnardo’s. The funds raised by Brad, Oliver and Steven will enable us to do even more to help vulnerable children and young people, and I want to thank them all for their support.

To sponsor Brad please visit


Notes to editors

For more information please contact Dan Hodges on 07887 737 048 or email

Picture caption:

Brad Owens is recovering from cancer and will run the Virgin Money London Marathon for Barnardo’s on Sunday April 22 April 2018.


Barnardo’s supports its runners through training days, practical support and advice, and representatives from the charity are there on the day to encourage them every step of the way.  

We raise £250,000 through the marathon every year, helping us do more to support the UK’s most vulnerable children and young people, including those who are just leaving care or have experienced child sexual exploitation.

To find out more about running the marathon for Barnardo’s visit

Barnardo’s has helped transform the lives of millions of disadvantaged children in the UK, and continues to help families to build a better future. In 2016/17 more than 272,000 children, young people, parents and carers were supported by Barnardo’s through more than 1,000 services across the UK, such as young carers, care leavers, foster carers and adoptive parents, training and skills or parenting classes.  Visit  to find out more. Registered charity No. 216250 and SC037605

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