Over the course of its 22 year history, Chariots of Fire has raised over £932,000 for a variety of worthwhile local charities. With this years charity named as Arthur Rank Hospice Charity.
Celebrating its 23rd anniversary on Sunday 21st September, the regions longest running charitable relay race, looks set to continue this established trend in its attempt to raise thousands of more pounds for this years selected charity, the Arthur Rank Hospice Charity (ARHC).
The charity are wholly focused on raising funds to build and provide a new hospice for Cambridge and to continue to be a Centre of Excellence in the provision of patient-led specialist palliative care. The new facility will double their capacity to care for more patients on-site than currently available at their present site. Through Chariots of Fire the ARHC hope to raise £70,000, and to achieve this are asking every anticipated runner to raise, as a minimum, only £33.00 in additional sponsorship.
Organisers of the event, Hewitsons Charitable Trust, the charitable arm of law firm Hewitsons LLP, never imagined that from the initial idea of Bill Matthew and Lewis Isaacs, the event would have grown in eminence to the extent it has with only a further £68,000 needed to be raised to pass the £1 million milestone.
According to Lewis Isaacs: "This is an extraordinary achievement which has totally exceeded anything Bill Matthews and I had in mind when we came up with the idea for Chariots of Fire 23 years ago. It would be marvellous if this year’s teams could take the total over the £1 million landmark."
Charles Hewitson said: “As race director for Chariots of Fire I have been delighted to witness the benefits provided by Chariots to the selected charity each year. The continued level of support extended to each charity by the Cambridge Community and the generosity provided by each of the Colleges and our event suppliers is further testament to the appeal of Chariots. It is encouraging that in this increasingly competitive environment, with many worthwhile and deserving charities, that all participants are prepared to raise funds for our selected charity.” Fully established in the city's event calendar, Chariots of Fire has over the years supported a wide variety of worthy causes and charities.
Previous charity recipients include Barnardo's, Emmaus, East Anglian Air Ambulance, Home-Start Cambridge and Cam Sight to name but a few. And it's not just the funds raised through Chariots that benefit the charity; there is a genuine legacy benefit from the exposure the event provides them.
Last years selected charity, Papworth Trust, not only raised £40,000 to refurbish and renovate their Cambridge day centre to better suit the needs of its service users but according to Annette Angel, Fundraising Manager "We were thrilled to be chased as the 2013 Chariots of Fire charity, and we're overwhelmed with the support we received from the 353 teams that took part, the event gave us such awareness in the local community.
One local company Ramboll even got in touch afterwards to offer to build an outside seated structure for out service users, they designed and built the 'tortoise' as a donation - our service users absolutely love it and use it everyday". Although team entries have closed for this years race, if you would like to illustrate your support please visit https://www.justgiving.com/arhospice/ or contact the charity on 01223 723115. Application forms for charities wishing to apply to be considered for the 2015 Chariots of Fire event will be available to download off the website mid October 2014. www.chariots-of-fire.co.uk