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Q & A with Sean Swindells

We interviewed Sean Swindells, Minister at Cruden Parish Church, to find out more about his plans for running the London Marathon 2020 for Christian Aid.

Published on 11 February 2020

I wanted to do something meaningful this year. There are a number of big anniversaries in 2020. I will be 60 in July, celebrate my silver wedding anniversary in June and next year I will be 25 years ordained.

- Sean Swindells, Cruden Parish Church Minister.

What’s the name of your church? How old are you, where do you live?

I work as a minister at the Cruden Parish Church. I am 59 years old and live in the village of Tarves where my wife Alison is the minister.

Have you run a marathon/half marathon before?

I have completed four marathons before – Edinburgh, Jerusalem, Luxemburg and Berlin. I've also done a number of half marathons. However, I would say that I'm only a recreational runner – fairly slow!

How’s the training going?

My training is a bit hit and miss at the moment, but I try to be in the gym twice a week and run at least twice a week.

What inspired you to run for Christian Aid – what’s your target and how much have you raised so far?

I wanted to do something meaningful this year. There are a number of big anniversaries in 2020. I will be 60 in July, celebrate my silver wedding anniversary in June and next year I will be 25 years ordained. My target is a minimum of £2,000 which I hope to exceed. So far I have raised £440.

What are your plans? Any future fundraising?

I've got lots of plans! I'm starting a weekly fitness group and a boot camp in February (I'm a trained fitness instructor) with all fees going towards Christian Aid. I'm also organising a buttery morning (local savoury bread roll), a brunch and possibly a concert. Plus I'll be tapping my friends, family and congregation for sponsorship. I'm also thinking of organising a boot camp (exercise group) for owners and their dogs later in the spring.

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How is your family/church supporting you?

My family have offered to sponsor me and are very supportive, though they mostly live away from Aberdeen. The church congregation are also being very supportive – they are helping to organise the buttery morning and brunch. They also helped at the fun run.

Congratulations for organising the fun run on Christmas Eve – it looked like a great event! Can you tell me a bit more about it and will it be an annual event?

Christmas Eve Fun Run was a great success. Over 70 people attended. Families with children and dogs, plus serious runners. The event was won by a 15 year old boy who outpaced some serious long distance runners! The weather and tidal conditions were perfect as the event took place on Cruden Beach. I've already been asked to repeat the event – but so much depends on tides and weather.

Anything else you’d like to tell me?

I'm very much looking forward to the London Marathon and I've already got travel and hotel booked. I'm going to be joined by a couple of close friends who have promised to cheer me on. The congregation have mischievously suggested that I run in fancy dress (not going to happen!) and I have suggested they join me on training runs!

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Cheer Sean on!

You can help Sean reach his goals by supporting and sharing his Just Giving page

Interested in running for Christian Aid? Find the distance that's right for you and make every step count.

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