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Norwich great-grandad runs for Sport Relief

PUBLISHED: 06:26 08 March 2010 | UPDATED: 08:38 02 July 2010

Tom Birch, 76, who is going to run the Sport Relief Mile in his kilt. Photo: Simon Finlay.

Tom Birch, 76, who is going to run the Sport Relief Mile in his kilt. Photo: Simon Finlay.

Kate Scotter

A great grandfather is set to dust off his running shoes and run a mile to raise hundreds of pounds for charity while wearing a kilt.

A great grandfather is set to dust off his running shoes and run a mile to raise hundreds of pounds for charity while wearing a kilt.

The Rev Tom Birch will join hundreds as he takes part in the Norwich Sport Relief Mile on March 21.

The event will be one of 16 Sainsbury's flagship Miles across the country taking place to raise money to help poor and vulnerable people, both at home in the UK and across the world's poorest countries.

Participants will run a route from outside Norwich Theatre Royal to Chapelfield Gardens and finish outside the Forum.

Mr Birch, 76, will wear a kilt and a Glengarry cap in memory of his late father-in-law Bill who was in a wartime Highland regiment.

The retired deacon, who is married to Barbara and has three children, said: “I have run nine London marathons for various charities and churches over the years and had thought I had retired from all that.

“But I thought there were so many needy people out there that it was time to dust off my trainers and help raise a generous sum for the underprivileged in our troubled world and for community groups.”

Mr Birch, of the city's Colegate area, who moved to Norwich from Basildon after he retired and did his last marathon in 2002, hopes to raise between £300 and £500.

On the day, he will be joined by Norwich Road Runners member Dennis Bartram who is 20 years his junior.

Sport Relief is a sponsoring initiative of Comic Relief and last time the Mile event was held in Norwich, in 2008, more than 2,000 people took part.

People taking part will be able to run, jog or walk a choice of distances of one, three or six miles.

The event, which has been backed by Norwich's very own running man Jackson Williams and Norwich City legend Darren Huckerby, has been organised in partnership with Norwich City Council.

To sponsor Mr Birch, go to www.mysportrelief.com/tribe

To enter the Mile event, go to www.sportrelief.com

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