Three marathons in three days in memory of ‘amazing’ friend who lost cancer battle aged 24

A group of friends have pledged to continue fundraising despite the death of their mate from cancer. Catherine Scott reports.

Left to right, Ollie Ward, Jeremy Butterfield and Henry Bartle will be running three marathons in three days in memory of their friend James Hindmarsh,

In April last year James Hindmarsh was diagnosed with a rare type of bone cancer called Alveolar Rhabdomyosarcoma (ARMS).

Over the following year he battled through various types of gruelling chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatment. Unfortunately this treatment hadn’t worked.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

His only option was to look into sourcing private medical treatment. This clearly came at a cost, even for the research to take place.

James Hindmarsh was just 24 when he died from a rare form of cancer

Together a group of his close friends and colleagues decided to raise money to try to give James from Harrogate the best chance possible to beat this cruel and punishing illness. Colleagues at work, the DSG Group, raised an impressive £35,000 and a group of friends also started to fundraise. They set themselves a target of £30,000 and were only £4,000 off that target when James, 24, lost his battle a year after his diagnosis.

The money raised will now be donated to Sarcoma UK, a charity that works to support and help sarcoma patients and hopefully to a recently diagnosed sufferer. And they have pledged to continue fund-raising for the charity in James’s name. Henry Bartle, Ollie Ward and Jeremy Butterfield will be running three marathons in three days taking place on May 28, 29 and 30 – ending at the West Park Hotel in Harrogate .

“James was an amazing person and completing the challenge is what he would have wanted,” says best friend Henry who had known James since he was six and who has lived with him. “James was always one to help others and never put himself first. By doing these challenges we’re honouring the outlook James had on life and pushing ourselves out of our comfort zones.”

Henry said James never wanted to know the bleak prognosis of his form of cancer which has around a 10 per cent survival rate.

“He stayed so positive right up until the end,” recalls Henry. “But this is such a rare cancer especially in someone James’s age that there just isn’t much known about it. As well as raising money we want to raise awareness of this type of cancer.”

The friends will be running the first two marathons along the canal from Leeds to Shipley and back and then on the final one in Harrogate.

To find out more and to support the friends visit