FIVE university students are running from Winchester to Paris next month in the fight against cancer.

Winchester University students Charlie Preston, Joshua Stevenson, Ben Mitchem, Adam Davey and Ryan Pierce, all 21, will set off from the cathedral on May 26 to run nearly 200 miles, finishing at the Eiffel Tower, on June 8, in a bid to raise around £5,000.

The group decided to raise money for Cancer Research UK after some of their close friends and family were diagnosed with the disease.

Charlie, a business management student, said: “A few of our friends have been diagnosed so we’re using that as motivation. It will give us the push we need for such a big challenge.”

The team have utilised all the resources they can find. Rotarians Josh and Adam have been helped by their club and its president, Nick Bell, who has managed to secure some of the sponsors and accommodation for them in France while others have helped with the promotion.

“We could really do with as much help as possible though,” Charlie added. “So anyone willing to lend a hand with sponsorship or anything else would be helping us a great deal.”

Digital media design student, Joshua Stevenson, said: “We’re hoping to raise somewhere between £4-6,000 but we’ve got a bit of work to do this month if we’re going to get close to that target.

“We’ve had a lot of help from the Rotary and from some of our friends but, as Charlie said, we need all the help we can get so anyone willing to get on board or just put their hand in their pocket and donate would be great.”

The team will run to Petersfield and then head towards Chichester, Worthing and New Haven before taking the ferry to Dieppe. From there they will run to Neufchatel-en-Bray, Dampierre-en-Bray, Lalandelle, Marines, St German en Laye before finishing in Paris having run a total of 182 miles across 14 days.

The final year students are putting all their efforts into training for the epic run after now having handed in their dissertations – all except for Josh that is.

“I get up and run 10 miles then it’s in the library,” he said. “Won’t be long until it’s done and then I can get focused on this.

“We’ll celebrate with a massive booze-up at the end of it, though probably somewhere where we’ll be sitting down!”

Anyone interested in supporting the team is urged to contact Josh or Charlie by email, or

To donate visit