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Wildlife enthusiast pushes herself to the limit for love of animals

PUBLISHED: 12:59 13 August 2018 | UPDATED: 15:25 14 August 2018

Laura Ross and her husband Rich took part in the double marathon Race to the King challenge for the East Winch Wildlife Centre Picture: Laura Ross

Laura Ross and her husband Rich took part in the double marathon Race to the King challenge for the East Winch Wildlife Centre Picture: Laura Ross

Laura Ross

A wildlife enthusiast pushed herself to the limit to raise money for an animal welfare charity.

Laura Ross and her husband Rich took part in the double marathon Race to the King challenge for the East Winch Wildlife Centre Picture: Laura RossLaura Ross and her husband Rich took part in the double marathon Race to the King challenge for the East Winch Wildlife Centre Picture: Laura Ross

Laura Ross and her husband Rich took part in the double marathon Race to the King challenge for the RSPCA’s East Winch Wildlife Centre.

The 52-mile challenge took the couple over hills and through stunning scenery across the South Downs Way, but at mile 31 the couple had to admit defeat.

Laura, from Southampton, said: “The trek was beautiful and it was very organised with a great atmosphere.

“There were people who raced ahead and completed it in one day and others like us who had never done anything like that before.

“We had everything we needed and the medics were outstanding but sadly we couldn’t finish the challenge.”

At the top of the third of the six hills during a rest stop at about 10pm, the pair decided they could no longer carry on.

“Rich had been suffering from chest pains for about ten miles and had constant hiccups,” Laura added. “If you don’t reach the next rest stop within a certain time they send a team to collect you and take you back and we knew we wouldn’t get there in time.

“Just knowing how we felt it wasn’t worth the risk and to be honest we wouldn’t have made it to the next stop.”

The couple were still able to raise £800 through their JustGiving page and a further £200 by selling sweets at Portsmouth and Isle of Wight NHS Hospital, where Laura works.

Laura had started out her career at the East Winch Wildlife Centre in 2004 when she had worked as a wildlife assistant.

She said: “It was just the most amazing experience of my entire life, I learnt so much in that short space of time.

“My husband was in the US Air Force and was stationed to America so unfortunately after six months we moved out there and I had to leave the RSPCA.

“I’ve had a massive journey since the RSPCA but I’ve never forgotten that it was my favourite job throughout my whole career.”

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