A FIVE-YEAR-OLD boy from Basingstoke has set himself an enormous challenge during lockdown, to raise money for a cause close to his heart.

Theo Elson was disappointed when his school had to close during the lockdown, but decided he wanted to use his daily exercise to make a positive impact.

Inspired by the story of Captain Tom, he is walking the distance of a half marathon - 13.1 miles - from January 15 to February 15, to raise money for the Multiple Sclerosis Trust (MS Trust),

Theo's great-grandmother and cousin both live with the condition, and so this is a cause which means a lot to Theo and his family.

Theo's dad, Dan, told the Gazette that Theo is a "typical five year old boy" who "loves to ride his bike and play lots of different games, and also loves school".

Dan added: "Unfortunately, due to Covid, Theo’s school has been shut, but he is using his daily exercise allowance to do something worthwhile.

"Anyone who knows Theo knows of him as a soft, caring boy who will always help anyone. He really likes walking, so Theo thought of the idea to raise money for a worthwhile charity whilst doing something he loves."

Theo set himself a goal of raising £200, which he exceeded within two hours of launching his fundraising page - where he also posts updates of his progress.

Dan said: "We are asking everyone and anyone to give what they can for such a good cause, that have helped so many families.

"With all the bad going on in the world right now with the virus and restrictions, Theo wants to put as much positivity and love into this world.

"We are incredibly proud of him, beyond belief, and we want to raise as much money as possible for this amazing charity."

To read more and support Theo's charity walk, visit: justgiving.com/fundraising/skye-hargroves