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Flora London Marathon - Ian Redmond

April 18th 2004

Celebrating his 50th birthday, Great Ape ambassador and all round favourite conservationist, Ian RedmondCelebrating his 50th birthday, Great Ape ambassador and all round favourite conservationist, Ian Redmond, completed the London Marathon for the first and only time on Sunday 18th April 2004 in a time of 4 hours 47 minutes.

"It exceeded all my expectations but was harder than I ever managed" said Ian seconds after arriving at Born Free's encampment at the end of Bird Cage Walk. The furthest I had run in training was 8 miles so the last 18 miles was uncharted territory".

an is recognised by conservationists and animal lovers around the world as one of our leading Great Ape experts Ian is recognised by conservationists and animal lovers around the world as one of our leading Great Ape experts having introduced Sir David Attenborough to gorillas for his famous sequence in Life on Earth. Ian is also the United Nations Environment Programmes Great Ape Survival Partnership Technical Team Director and has spent the last two years criss-crossing the globe promoting the conservation of our nearest non-human relatives.

Ian Redmond runs for Born Free to save Gentil"Born Free had made me a super big banner with an ape on it", said Ian "Originally I had thought I would run for a few miles and then discard it but the public's reaction everywhere I ran was immense and shouts from the public to keep going for the apes made me stick with the banner!! It slowed me down and was positively a hazard to other runners as whenever the wind caught it it threatened to decapitate several other competitors at a single go but in the end I became very attached to it".

Ian is also a leading light within the Orang-utan Foundation so no great apes species on earth is left outIan and his colleagues at Born Free are fighting for Great Apes in a number of African countries. Uganda, Cameroon and DRC. Ian is also a leading light within the Orang-utan Foundation so no great apes species on earth is left out.

In recognition of his achievement Born Free is keeping open Ian's Just Giving website to receive donations and gifts to help the apes so if you would like to reward Ian for completing the London Marathon 2004 (he was on his back unable to move with a spinal injury just two weeks before!) then please go to and if you are UK tax payer, simply hit 'Gift Aid' and we can recover more from the Government at no cost to you.

To find out about Born Free's work, please go to

Tel 00 (0)1403 240170
Fax 00 (0)1403 327833

Keep Wildlife in The Wild

Join Born Free's fantastic trek through Sri Lanka this September to visit the baby elephants at the orphanage in Udawalewe. Enjoy the experience of a lifetime AND raise funds for the orphans' daily food and care.

To find out more, call Sam on 00 44 (0)1403 240170, email
or visit our website at


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  London Marathon History:

In 1979, hours after having run the York Marathon, the former Olympic champion Chris Brasher wrote an article for The Observer which began: "To believe this story you must believe that the human race be one joyous family, working together, laughing together, achieving the impossible. Last Sunday, in one of the most trouble-stricken cities in the world, 11,532 men and women from 40 countries in the world, assisted by over a million black, white and yellow people, laughed, cheered and suffered during the greatest folk festival the world has seen." Enchanted with the sight of people coming together for such an occasion, he concluded questioning "..whether London could stage such a festival?"

Within months the London Marathon was born, with Brasher making trips to America to study the race organisation and finance of big city marathons such as York and Boston, the oldest in the world. He secured a contract with Gillette of £50,000, established the organisation's charitable status, and set down six main aims for the event, which he not only hoped would echo the scenes he had witnessed in York, but also put Britain firmly on the map as a country capable of organising major events.

His vision was realised on March 29th 1981, with the inaugural London Marathon proving an instant success. More than 20,000 people applied to run: 7,747 were accepted and 6,255 crossed the finish line on Constitution Hill as cheering crowds lined the route. Now at capacity, a total of 46,500 were accepted from a record 80,500 applicants, with 32,563 finishing on the day. To date more than half a million people have completed the Marathon.

In its history, the course has remained relatively constant with the finish being the main point of change. Moving from Constitution Hill to Westminster Bridge in 1982, it stayed there until restoration work in 1993 saw it relocated to The Mall where it has remained to date. These changes have necessitated route shifts to accommodate the full 26.2 mile distance while the building work around Canary Wharf also brought about slight variations. The start however has always been on Blackheath Common and Greenwich Park, with the route as a whole designed to follow the Thames as closely as possible and finish in the heart of the capital.

Useful training information for runners.

Charity fundraising can be hard work. With a personal fundraising page from, you can now collect donations by credit and debit card from friends and family all over the world.

It is the most secure and efficient way to collect money: we send donations direct to your charity's bank account, every donor gets an email receipt and 28% extra in Gift Aid is automatically added to UK donations. No more dog-eared sponsorship forms: Justgiving does all the hard work for you.

Born Free are increasingly receiving donations from supporters who have run in other national races including the Great North Run, the Great South Run and the Flora Light Marathon for Women - all raising money for wildlife projects.

If you are taking part in any of these events or others no matter how big or small contact if you would like to raise funds for Born Free.


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