Wiltshire councillor Laura Mayes is putting on her running shoes to raise money for our appeal for Devizes Opportunity Centre.

Coun Mayes, who is the portfolio holder for children’s services, believes Wiltshire Council had no choice but to pass on the £10,000 Government grant cut, but wants to do her own bit to fill the financial gap.

She will be running the Bath Half Marathon on Sunday, March 2 and hopes to raise about £500.

Coun Mayes, 47, who is married with two teenage sons, also sees the run as a personal challenge as she spent much of last year recovering from treatment for breast cancer.

She said: “It has been good for me to have something to aim for. I was only able to get back to running properly in the autumn and having the half marathon to aim for has been very good for me.

“I have decided to give all of the sponsorship money I raise to the opportunity centre as I know they do a tremendous job and they are local to me in Devizes.

“From a council point of view I think we are doing all we can to support them and the other centres in the county. We give them £70,000 a year while some other councils give similar centres no funding at all.”

Coun Mayes, who was given the all clear from cancer when she saw her specialist earlier this month, will be joined on the run by her husband James.

But her regular training partner is Otto the miniature Shnauzer who accompanies her on runs up and down the Caen Hill flight of locks.

Coun Mayes of Roundway, Devizes, said: “I am hoping to complete the run in just over two hours. I have run a half marathon in under two hours before but this time the challenge is more about the taking part.”