Mum to run Sunderland 10k with family after skin cancer removal

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Julie Douglas who was diagnosed with skin cancer last year is running with her family and two of their closest friends in the fifth annual Sunderland 10k fun run on May 3.

Julie, from Sunderland, was given the news that she had skin cancer on her breast 18 months ago. She has since had it removed, and husband Stuart said they are running the 10k for her.

He said: “It’s definitely nice to all do something together as a family.”

Stuart and Julie are running alongside their eldest son, Ewan, and two of their closest friends, Mark and Anna.

“We only signed up to it less than two months ago now,” he said.

“We were all round Mark and Anna’s house, and we’d had a few drinks and just decided that we’d all do it.”

Stuart ran the first Sunderland 10k in 2011, but for the rest of the group, the event on May 3 is their first experience of the annual event.

“We’ve not done as much training as we should of done” he laughed. “My wife’s doing a bit, I’m doing a bit and my son is quite fit anyway because he boxes for Birtley Boxing Club.

“The other two are trying to get out of it, but we signed up as a pack so we’ll finish it as a pack.”

The group are running in aid of COCO (Comrades of Children Overseas), the event’s charity sponsor for the second consecutive year.

Speaking to the Sunderland 10k website, event founder, Steve Cram, said: “Our partnership with Sunderland City Council and Sunderland Live has proved to be very effective and allowed us to build the half marathon and 10k into significant sporting events for both the city and the wider region.

“Once again, we’re really looking forward to seeing thousands of people pounding the streets of Sunderland, being cheered on by thousands more enthusiastic supporters.”

Stuart and Julie are out training as much as four times a week as the race is just weeks away. But for the pair of them, they are happy to all be on the start line.

“It’s just a case of turning up on the start line and seeing where we finish,” Stuart said.

“I’m going to try and beat my time from the first time I did it a number of years ago, so if I can come in under 59 minutes I’ll be happy with that.”

Stuart also praised the city for hosting the event. “It’s a really good thing to get the whole city together.

“Especially to get something done on Wearside, when everything tends to be focused on Tyneside, it’s nice for something to happen in our city.”

The event organisers are expecting around 4,000 people to take part in the event, to find out more information on the run, visit

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