A BASINGSTOKE dad-to-be will take on the London Marathon.

Sam Veel is running the epic race in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, after watching three of his family affected by the disease.

The 28-year-old lost his mum to cancer when he was young, and throughout the pandemic, has watched his stepmum and nan go through treatment.

“I am running for these amazing women in my life and everyone else close to me that has been affected by cancer,” Sam said. “To my mum, mum and mum's mum, I am doing this for you!”

Of his first mum, Linda, Sam said: “I have very little memory of mum. The memories I do have though, are incredible! The stories and pictures I get told and shown are amazing and I'm so happy that my family were snap happy. My aunt has some amazing stories too!”

Then, in 2007, Sam’s mum Debbie received a cancer diagnosis - and then again last year. Shortly after finding out about Debbie, the family received the news that her mum, Sam’s nan, had also got it.

Sam is hoping to raise £2,620 and already has £1,795 towards his target for his first ever marathon, which he hopes to complete in under 4 hours.

You can donate here: https//uk.virginmoneygiving.com/samveel.

Last year's London marathon was held virtually because of the Covid pandemic, with runners expecting to return to the capital on October 3 as the event is held in person for the first time since 2019.

Speaking about why he decided to enter the event, Sam added: “I used to do a lot cycling and have raised money for Macmillan by completing the London to Brighton bike ride, but during the winter, cycling was not so much fun.

“So, I took up running a couple of years ago and now I run nearly every day.

“A training plan is essential and you need to be able to refer to it and say ‘yes, I’ve done that’ because if you don’t, you might not make it to the end of the marathon.

"The thought of letting people down is and not raising the money is just not an option,” Sam added.

Macmillan area fundraising manager, Beth Bartlam, said: “Sam’s motivation for raising funds for Macmillan is clear to see.

"It’s with the support and generosity of people like Sam and the public that we will do whatever it takes to support people with cancer. Good luck Sam!”