Blind runner Neil to tackle a ‘favourite event’

Alan Coull and Neil Skene on the Brig o' Balgownie Run
Alan Coull and Neil Skene on the Brig o' Balgownie Run

A North-east running enthusiast who is registered blind, is preparing to run his eighth half marathon to raise money for blind and deaf people.

Neil Skene, fundraising co-ordinator for North East Sensory Services (NESS), will take part in the Great Aberdeen Run half marathon alongside guide runner Alan Coull on August 26.

Neil said: “This is one of my favourite events as you get to run on the streets of Aberdeen with thousands of other runners; the atmosphere is electric, keeping you motivated to finish the race in good time.

“Without the support of our guide runners, we would not be able to take part. We rely heavily on them to verbally and physically communicate with us, indicating twists and turns and if there are people or obstacles ahead.

“My training schedule includes regular runs incorporating shorter distances, helping me to increase my speed. I take part in local parkruns which are organised weekly by volunteers.

“For longer distances I train in my village Inverurie and surrounding areas.”

Graham Findlay, chief executive officer for NESS, said: “Neil has participated in numerous races, including half marathon and marathons. His efforts are incredible. We are encouraging others to get involved by joining the NESS team and help raise money for the charity, which supports more than 6,000 blind and deaf people in the north-east.”

Also participating in the NESS team is Kerry Robbins, whose son is deaf and receives support from the Young People’s Sensory Service (YPSS) programme at NESS. For more information, contact Neil Skene at NESS on 0345 27 12345 or email: neil.skene@nesensoryservices.org