Training is starting in earnest for the Countryside Alliance’s Virgin Money London Marathon team who will be pounding the streets of London on 23 April, in aid of The Countryside Alliance Foundation (TCAF).

Top fundraiser so far is amateur polo player and Cheshire hunt regular Josh Woolley, 27, who was to run the Marathon for us in 2015 but did not compete due to injury. He has already got £1,136 in his pot from well-wishers.

The founder and director of our Fishing 4 Schools initiative – part of TCAF – Charles Jardine is now in second place, having raised £330 in just a week.

Charles, 64, last ran the London Marathon in 2015 and aims to raise at least £1,050 for Fishing 4 Schools through his JustGiving page. Sponsor Charles on JustGiving.

Charles said: “Fishing 4 Schools grew by 100% last year. We now work with schools in Kent, East Anglia, the South Coast, the South West and Wales and will be spreading into South Yorkshire and Derbyshire in 2017. But this all costs money and as a charity we always need more funding.

“People may say I’m mad attempting another marathon but all I can say is that the kids are worth it. I’ve been in the gym, doing spin, core and aerobics classes, I dragged the dog out for a 10k run the other week and am trying to get in as good condition as I can before the big day.”

And Evelyn Armstrong from Leyburn, North Yorks has managed to raise £205 towards her £875 target.

She has been running in the field of the Hurworth Hunt (pictured) as part of her training and plans to get hunt supporters to sponsor for running home from the kennels in Northallerton in April.

Evelyn said: “Training isn’t going as well as it should be as I was ill before Christmas and again at the end of January and I have been struggling to get the miles in. But I did a good run today and I am ‘blessed’ with hills around here, so it’s always a good work out!” Sponsor Evelyn on JustGiving.

Meet the rest of our TCAF team