250 people took part in the family-friendly event, which offered 10k, 5k and 2.5k routes and the chance to get covered in rainbow powder paint. The event has so far raised £22,000 for the four hospitals we support - Hertford County Hospital, Lister Hospital, Mount Vernon Cancer Centre and New QEII Hospital.

The event was officially opened by Mayor of Stevenage, Margaret Notley, and Dr David Buckle, charity chair and non-executive director for East and North Hertfordshire NHS Trust.

Many runners took part to raise funds to thank a department in the hospital that had treated them or their family.

PE teacher Lauren Cooper has raised over £3,000 for Lister’s physiotherapy department to thank them for helping her learn to walk again after she had to have her left leg amputated when a wall collapsed on her during Storm Eunice in February.

Lauren said: “I want to raise funds to thank the whole physiotherapy team. What they do is amazing. They have listened to me, laughed with me, fought my corner and given me the confidence to keep pushing on. 

“They haven’t just helped me with the practical elements of learning to walk again, they have helped me mentally and genuinely care about how I am.”

Liz Hill and family raised £1,420 to thank Mount Vernon Cancer Centre where she is receiving treatment.

Liz said; “I was diagnosed with cervical cancer in May this year and since then my life and the lives of those close to me have been flipped over. We’ve been on a rollercoaster with lots of ups and downs and it’s not over yet.

“My sister, Ellie, found out about the Rainbow Run and thought what a great idea it would be to give something back to the hospital that is treating me as well as giving us all a focus. We hope to raise as much as a we can.”

There were also many NHS staff taking part and volunteering on the day. A team from Lister Macmillan Cancer Centre raised £645 for their department to help make things a little easier for their patients who are receiving treatment for cancer.  

The youngest participant was 16-month-old Caleb who took part with his mum, Emily, to thank Lister’s maternity department for looking after them both so well when Caleb was born.

Beth McNeil, supporter relationship manager at the charity said: “It was such a fantastic, fun-filled day. Everyone enjoyed it. We’ve already had so many requests about doing it again next year so we are pencilling in 25 June 2023 for the next one.

“We had great support from the local community, and I’d like to thank the following people: Hertford Regional College, Walter Cooper, Austin’s Funeral Directors, CPJ Field Funeral Directors, PayPoint, Connect Scaffolding, All Signs All Print for sponsoring the event.

“I’d also like to thank Stevenage Council and Ridlins Athletics Stadium, Alexandra Ridley Photography, Megan Cope, videographer Jim Coote, Glyn Doggett, Nicola Church from Elevation Personal Training, Tesco Hertford and Tesco Merchandising Centre, Jake Amos, Michael Hearn Medical, Lucky Penny Weddings, Snug Toasties, Herts Ices and Round Diamond School PTA. They all helped make the day such a huge success. “