The idea of running 268 miles through waist deep snow wouldn’t appeal to many people, but for Paul Reeve from Portreath that is exactly what he will be doing on Sunday 15th January to raise money for St Petroc’s Society.

Paul Reeve

Paul, who is the senior Property Manager for the Diocese of Truro, will be taking part in the Spine, dubbed ‘Britain’s most brutal race’, a 268 mile, non-stop, uncompromising winter challenge encompassing the entire Pennine Way. Paul said: “Working as a Senior Property Manager, I often think of those without a home, and particularly at this cold time of year so thought I would raise money for the cause”.

Bishop of St Germans, Rt Rev’d Chris Goldsmith is President for St Petroc’s Society.

A keen runner for over 10 years and member of two running clubs – Carn Runners based in Camborne and the Mud Crew Runners – Paul has taken part in a number of ultra-marathons but this latest race will be the most difficult yet. He said: “I will be running in the middle of winter in waist deep snow and in places I’ll have to wear snow shoes and ice spikes while also carrying everything I will need from my sleeping bag and clothes to a gas stove!”

Paul will join around 100 other runners and the race is the culmination of two years of training which has seen him undertake a 100 mile race in Transylvania through waist high snow, bears, and Dracula’s castle, a 185 mile race along the English and Welsh Border and a 100 mile circumnavigation of the Cornish coastal path.

Paul explained: “To take part in The Spine, you are vetted and you have to have done ultra-marathons and self-navigation events. When I ran the English Welsh Border in September, of the 77 who started, only 48 finished and I wasn’t last!”

Paul on a previous run

Although the events don’t require runners to raise money or seek sponsorship, Paul decided to use his efforts to support St Petroc’s Society as a way of giving something back. He said: “In doing these marathons there’s a sense of personal achievement but Ultra running is so selfish. You only do it for yourself and it takes you away from family and friends for long periods of time and it’s not cheap. It really is about personal gain, so I thought it was important that others should benefit from my efforts.”

Corinna Langford, Community Relations Manager for St Petroc’s society said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have such amazing and determined support. What a gruelling challenge! We wish Paul the very best and will be monitoring his progress all the way. We are delighted to see his support from South West Building and Maintenance Ltd, and also At Your Pace in Helston who already do such a fabulous job of supporting us and our clients. Thank you so much!”

At Your Pace running shop in Helston and South West Building and Maintenance have already stepped up and offered Paul sponsorship but he is seeking more. At Your Pace already support St Petroc’s with their Street Feet campaign to end trench foot and collect second hand quality trainers in store.

Paul said: “I don’t have a specific sponsorship amount in mind because I plan on running more races and I’ll just keep raising money as I go.”

And Paul won’t be hanging around. Just two weeks after the Spine, he is already signed up to do the 100 mile circumnavigation of Cornwall’s coast path again. “Last time I did it I was one of 28 people to finish it out of the 120 who started and I wasn’t last! It took me 32 hours but next time I am hoping to do it in under 30 hours.”

You can sponsor Paul on his Local Giving page