Taking a Running Jump

Back in 1991, whilst Mark I’Anson was serving in the Army, the last thing he wanted to see after he left the aeroplane was his parachute failing to open correctly. Hitting the ground at over 30mph left him with a dislocated hip, a ‘dodgy knee’ and a 45 minute ambulance ride to hospital with gas and air as his only painkiller.

Mark was very active before the accident; skiing, squash, water skiing and of course running, but he spent the next 10 years with a ‘dodgy knee’ and developed a catchphrase of “let’s get a cab”. Last year, Mark finally went to the doctors and asked for an operation because his knee was beginning to have a major impact on his quality of life. Three days after seeing the doctor, he was in hospital and after a successful operation, was pain free for the first time in many years.

What started as an initial visit to the gym with his wife Deborah, Mark began running once again. After running 2 miles on the treadmill and finding he was pain free, he returned the following night and did another couple of miles, and soon began returning night after night gradually building up the miles once again.

This year, Mark ran in the Virgin London Marathon and completed the course in an official time of 5hrs 25mins. You can read his personal account of his marathon adventures later on in this article.

The Loddon School So what is the connection with Bramley you may be asking yourself? Mark ran the marathon in aid of two charities – The Children’s Society and The Loddon School .

The Loddon School was established by Marion Cornick in 1988 as a charitable trust to provide a much needed school in the south of England for children who can no longer live at home because of their exceptional support needs. Providing both a home and a school for Twenty eight children who have the most severe and complex learning difficulties, many children also have additional problems associated with autism, epilepsy, self injury, aggression and disruptive behaviour.

The Loddon school is situated close to Bramley, just off the A33 at Church End and provides a home to the children 52 weeks a year.

Even though Mark has finished the marathon, you can continue to donate by visiting either of the following links:


Donate to the Loddon school

The Loddon School also has it’s own JustGiving page which you can find at:


See the next page to read Marks own diary of the day he ran in the Virgin London Marathon:

1 Comment

  1. Thanks so much for putting this article in your paper. Mark is my son-in-law and his wife is my daughter, Deborah. Deborah is also passionate to meet the very special needs of the children of The Loddon School which I founded in 1988. Children with autism need lots of care and support throughout their lives as it is a serious life-long condition. We are always keen to welcome volunteers both in the school and in the associated homes in Basingstoke supporting young adults in the community.In 22 years 100 children have benefited from the unique work of the school,and there are 28 of them living in the Liaise Loddon homes. My best wishes to Mark as he prepares for the New York Marathon. Thanks Mark-we need people with passion in our work!

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