8th Dec, 2016

She may not have made Rio, but inspirational borough runner who was told she'd never walk completes London Marathon

Shaun Reynolds 1st May, 2016 Updated: 21st Oct, 2016

I MAY not have made the squad for Rio but I completed the course despite hitting a brick wall at 20 miles.

Those are the words of inspirational London Marathon runner Emma Cartland who was told at the age of one that she’d never be able to walk.

The 31-year-old has suffered from cerebral palsy since she was born and still struggles with the movement of her right hand.

Despite her condition, Emma completed the course along with 38,000 other runners and has even hinted about a return to London in the coming years.

She added: “There were tears at the end when I was running down The Mall but I was absolutely elated to have finished.

“My motto for the day was don’t stop believing, I was really touched with the encouragement, support and generous donations from my friends and family.”

The John Lewis manager ended up raising over £4,000 for her chosen charity Round Table Children’s Wish.

Dedicated to granting granting ‘handcrafted’ wishes to children and young people with life threatening illnesses, Children’s Wish has provided dozens of children with personalised wishes ranging from sporting days out to donations.

The Shirley resident said: “I will return to London one day to improve my time and I’m certainly going to continue running.

“I’m thinking of setting myself a new challenge – I’m uncertain what to do at the moment but I have a few ideas in the back of my mind.

“I’d definitely encourage anyone to take part in the London Marathon – if I can do it anyone can.

“Crossing the line was one of the best experiences of my life after many highs and lows.

“Some people did question whether I’d reach the finish line, but I proved them wrong and I couldn’t be happier.”

To support Emma’s run, visit Virgin Money Giving and search for Emma Cartland.