THE Olympics and now the Paralympics have been an inspiration to athletes everywhere ... and no-one more so than Blackpool’s Carl Barnard.
The big-hearted bricklayer from Spencer Court dedicates much of his life to fund-raising to help children fulfil their own athletics dreams.
The 49-year-old has completed 15 marathons and 25 half-marathons, taking in such famous events as London, New York, Dublin, Chicago, Berlin and Manchester, as well as London.
He has picked up plenty of medals in the process, but of far greater significance to Carl is the thousands of pounds he has raised for children’s charities.
Having most recently competed in the Blackpool 10k, Carl is next bound for Tyneside and next month’s Great North Run, in which he will again be raising money for Get Kids Going.
Carl explained: “It’s a charity to buy equipment for all sports for children with disabilities, to help them improve.
“I’ve loved athletics all my life and have raised a lot of money since 2000. I still feel I have a lot more challenges left in me and would like to raise as much as I can for charities.
“My inspiration is Shelly Woods and I really hope she gets a gold medal at the Paralympics.
For more information on Carl’s charity racing and how you can support his worthy causes, check out his page at www.justgiving.com