Two North East brothers have raised over £1,000 for charity after completing the Great North Run, despite bad weather meaning one of them had to run the course virtually.

Robert Stevens, from Darlington, and his brother Billy had both planned to take part in 2023’s Great North Run on September 10, but a twist of fate meant Billy was stranded on an offshore oil rig.

But the brothers pushed through and arranged for Billy to complete the race virtually, running the entirety of the Great North Run on a treadmill.

Darlington and Stockton Times: The Sick Children's Fund Great North Run Team at Crawford House.

Pictures and videos of Billy show him smiling as he completed the race the night before the one in Newcastle was due to take place.

Robert, who completed his second Great North Run this year after 2018, stepped in to arrange the virtual run whilst competing in the course to raise money for the Sick Children’s Fund.

He said: “The day was great, apart from the washout at the end which meant it took me a long time to get back home.

“I didn’t get back home to pick my son up until 9pm at night, but the atmosphere on the day was just absolutely superb.

“The crowd pushed us forward, helping us along to the end. The rain surpassed my ankles at one point but everyone was still helping each other.

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“I'd like to thank Burnside Carpets and Davey Ward who sponsored me for the race!"

Darlington and Stockton Times: Billy completes the Great North Run on the rig.Billy completes the Great North Run on the rig. (Image: ROBERT STEVENS)

This comes just a month after Robert’s son Bobby completed the Fun Run at the Darlington 10k on August 6, raising over £400 for Down Syndrome group TOGETHER 21 showing that running is clearly a family passion.

At the time, Robert emphasised how proud he was of his son.

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He said: "He did it all himself and got the medal, and when he did, he was super proud of himself.

“Then, someone suggested we take part in the fun run together this year so we decided to do it.

"I am very proud of him, he is a little fighter. He goes from strength to strength and nothing phases him.

"I am just so happy for him, and he is a happy little boy now too."