THE managing director of a furniture store has swapped the comfort of his car for running shoes as he prepares to take part in his first marathon in aid of charity.

Chris O’Connor, joint MD of Michael O’Connor Furniture, is running to and from work each day as part of his training for the London Marathon later this month.

The businessman, who lives six miles from the Stockton branch, has begun a fitness regime in an attempt to raise £2,000 in aid of the Butterwick Hospice.

This will be the third charity event undertaken by Mr O’Connor on behalf of the hospice for which he has previously raised more than £4,500.

He said: “Having supported Butterwick Hospice in the past, I was delighted when they approached me to take part in the London Marathon. The hospice is an excellent cause and I am looking forward to raising more funds for and awareness about them.”

Butterwick Hospice provides help and support to those living with life limiting illnesses and their families. The hospice helps both children and adults to ensure quality of life is upheld throughout their illness.

(CORR)Graham Leggatt–Chidgey, chief executive of the charity, said: “Everybody at the Hospice works hard to provide an excellence of care to all of our patients and their families. All of our services are provided entirely without charge and although we receive about a quarter of our costs from the NHS we rely on the local community to help us raise some £10,000 a day to fund our vital work.”

To make a donation visit