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Charity fun run in memory of Wakefield man

Young widow, Kathryn Howitt, from Newton Hill in Wakefield, is paying tribute to her late husband Glen by organising a memorial fun run in aid of UK charity, the Blood Pressure Association (BPA).

Kathryn and Glen’s family are appealing to readers to take part in the ‘Glen Howitt Memorial Fun Run,’ on Sunday 10 June, starting at the Queen Elizabeth Grammar School in Wakefield from 11am. The fundraising event is open to everyone and has a number of distances available to walk or run, e.g. 2km, 4km and 6.5km, to encourage families and older relatives to take part.

Glen Howitt, who worked as Grounds Manager at the Queen Elizabeth Grammar School in Wakefield, tragically died at the age of 39, of heart failure, brought on by high blood pressure. Over 16 million people in the UK have high blood pressure, that’s one in three, and a third of them are unaware they have the condition, the major cause of strokes, heart attacks and heart failure.

Kathryn, 33, explains: "Two years ago, high blood pressure unexpectedly took the life of my beloved husband. After his death, I felt that I needed to raise awareness of this silent killer, because so many people, like with Glen, are unaware they even have this condition.

"Glen’s family and I hope this event will be a fun day out for all the family and most importantly raise awareness and vital funds for the BPA, the UK’s blood pressure charity. Fancy dress is very welcome and a prize will be awarded for the most imaginative costume!"

Grant Usmar, BPA Head of Fundraising, explains: "Kathryn has shown outstanding courage and determination during this difficult time, and still, two years later, continues to support the BPA through her fundraising and awareness raising activities.

"The ‘Glen Howitt Memorial Fun Run’ is set to be a fantastic fundraising event for the BPA, which will help us ensure that greater numbers of people understand the importance of ‘knowing their numbers’ and controlling their blood pressure. Our work would not be possible without the commitment and dedication of people like Kathryn."

Feeling inspired by Kathryn’s story? Then why not rally round friends and family and take part in the ‘Glen Howitt Memorial Fun Run.’ To register and receive sponsorship forms, please visit www.bpassoc.org.uk or call Grant Usmar on 020 8772 4985.


Notes to Editors:

For further information please contact:
Anne-Marie Devaney, BPA Press & PR Officer, 020 8772 4993
Sue Massey, BPA Head of Communications, 020 8772 4984

  • The Blood Pressure Association is the UK’s blood pressure charity which provides information and support to people with high blood pressure and also raises awareness about prevention of the condition. For more information visit www.bpassoc.org.uk or call 020 8772 4994
  • With thanks to Premier Waste Management, contributing sponsors of the Glen Howitt Memorial Fun Run (Sunday 10 June 2007)
  • The BPA encourages everyone to have a healthy lifestyle to maintain a healthy blood pressure and reduce their risk of stroke and cardiovascular disease. The BPA’s top tips to lowering blood pressure are:
  1. Get your blood pressure checked and ‘Know Your Numbers!’® - it’s free, painless and can be done at your GP surgery and many high street and supermarket pharmacies
  2. Cut down on salt – adults should have no more than 6g a day – that’s a teaspoon. More than 75 per cent of the salt we consume is already in food so check the label. Remember that to work out the salt content you have to multiply sodium level by 2.5. If a product has more than 0.2 grams of sodium (0.5 grams of salt) per 100 grams of food you should leave it on the shelf
  3. Eat at least five – ideally seven to nine - portions of fruit and vegetables every day (Their potassium content helps to lower blood pressure)
  4. Be as active as you can – moderate physical activity, eg, brisk walking, five days a week will help get your pressure down
  5. Find and reach your ideal weight
  6. Keep an eye on alcohol – 2-3 units a day maximum for women and 3-4 for men. One unit is equal to a small glass of wine or a half pint of beer.

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