Loch Ness Marathon for Norfolk ex-serviceman

The Loch Ness monster will be far from the mind of ex-serviceman Colin Shearer as he runs a marathon round the shores of the famous Scottish freshwater loch.

He will be raising money for the National Memorial Arboretum, a national site of remembrance for members of the Armed Forces who have sacrificed themselves for their country.

Mr Shearer, 56, who works at Holkham Hall as manager of the famous stately home, is due to take part in the Loch Ness Marathon today.

He is raising money for the Arboretum which is based in Staffordshire and was created in 1997 as a special place to remember those who have served and continue to serve the nation.

Mr Shearer, who served in the Parachute Regiment and the Royal Air Force Regiment said: 'After serving in the Armed Forces I came to believe there is a need for the sacrifices of generations serving after the two world wars to be remembered at somewhere other than the Cenotaph in London.

'The National Memorial Arboretum provides a centre of focus where we can remember both military and civilians who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of their country. It is a special place with a vision to create a truly stunning site of remembrance'.

With 50,000 trees planted and 160 dedicated memorials already established in the 150 acre Arboretum the site is evolving every year and the fund raising efforts such as Mr Shearer's ensures this national memorial provides a unique place of remembrance for generations to come.

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To sponsor Mr Shearer, go to www.holkham.co.uk and follow the links in the event diary listings to his 'just giving' page.