A local lad has embarked on a mammoth fitness challenge this month to raise money for a worthy cause following a number of personal tragedies.
Although it sounds hard to believe, Martin Kavanagh admittedly “didn’t really run” that much before setting himself the task of clocking up an accumulative 168.78km – the equivalent of four marathons – around his local area over the course of the month of January.
But it’s his near-novice abilities that make his achievements all the more impressive.
The 34-year-old – who is originally from Tullamore, County Offaly in Ireland, but now lives with his family in Manchester – was keen to undertake a challenge that he could really be proud of after sadly losing several relatives and friends to mental health battles in recent months.
And it was these devastating loses that provided the catalyst for his efforts to raise awareness and achieve his fundraising goals.
With every kilometre he runs, Martin is raising money “in aid of healthier minds” for Manchester Mind – an independent, self-financed charity that has been supporting young people and adults with mental health issues in Greater Manchester for over 30 years.
Manchester Mind aims to promote positive attitudes to mental health to challenge the stigma, increase awareness, and work for better mental health for all.
“This charity is close to my heart,” Martin said.
“We all know someone who has suffered or is suffering from mental health and some who [has] unfortunately lost their battle.
“There needs to be more money put into the mental health services and I would like to do a little to help.
“[Manchester Mind] values the commitment of their staff and volunteers, who work hard to ensure services are delivered in a way that enables people to feel heard and involved.”
He concluded: “Everyone deserves to be supported in their mental health needs and we have a part to play in that.”
Whilst this has mostly been a solo challenge, Martin did tell us that he manages to recruit members of his family to join him in his efforts from time to time.
He also likes to keep those who are keenly supporting him updated by posting route maps of his daily runs around the community on social media, as well as his dedicated fundraising page, which often earn him worthy comments of praise that inspire him to keep going.
Martin’s friend Maya spoke for everyone when she told us that his achievements are really “pretty amazing”, as he gears up to complete his last run of the challenge in the coming days.
With over 148km complete, and not long to go before the challenge is complete, Martin has set himself the target of raising £1,000 for Manchester Mind, having already achieved over £321 and counting, and assuring that “every donation will help”.
Peter Kay issues heartfelt thanks to Manchester fans and teases ANOTHER big announcement
Peter Kay has sent a lovely message to fans in Manchester after making his triumphant return to the live scene last weekend.
The Bolton comedian has just ticked off the first two nights of a mammoth run at the AO Arena, which includes 42 Manchester shows between now and 2025.
On his opening night – his first real venture into the spotlight since he largely stepped away from the public eye 12 years ago – he was moved to tears by the standing ovation he received before he’d even started the show.
And now Peter has issued a heartfelt thank you message.
He said in a statement: “I’d like to say a huge thank you to everyone who came to the first shows in Manchester.
“It was incredible to be part of such a happy experience.
“Everybody deserves a bit of joy. Here’s to a lot more in the shows to come!!”
And that’s not all – his post also hinted that there’s yet another announcement to come (because apparently more than 100 tour dates and breaking the internet with ticket demand wasn’t enough).
The late monarch – who celebrated her Platinum Jubliee back in June 2022, before sadly passing away in September – the word guessing game that took the world by storm, and the disgraced Manchester United footballer are just three of the topics that have peaked the interest of Brits enough to search for them on Google this year.
Wordle took the top spot on the 2022 list, after gamers nationwide presumably used the search engine to figure out the answers each day.
The puzzle game beat out the 2022 World Cup – which is currently underway in Qatar with the Three Lions set to face France in the Quarter Finals – which came in second place, followed by Ukraine and Lateral Flow Tests (LFTs) rounding out the top five.
As well as Ukraine, the country of Russia has also made its way into the top 10 most-searched topics, thanks to the latter’s invasion of the former.
Likely the most familiar name on the list to Mancunians will be that of Manchester United footballer Mason Greenwood – who is due to face trial next year after being charged in 2022 with attempted rape, assault, and controlling and coercive behaviour relating to the same woman.
Wordle is not alone on the list when it comes to games either, as its more difficult counterpart Quordle – which tasks hardcore players with guessing four words in just nine tries – ranked in eighth place on the list.
Serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer, who was the subject of a new Netflix series starring Evan Peters in 2022, and actor Johnny Depp, who was at the forefront of a highly-publicised libel trial between him and his ex-wife Amber Heard for a considerable chunk of the year, are the last two searches to round out the top 10.