1. ITV Report

Donations for marathon runner continue to soar

Marathon runner Claire Squires Photo: RAFA

Donations to a charity in honour of a runner from Leicestershire who collapsed and died during the London Marathon continued to soar today.

More than £400,000 has been raised for the Samaritans.

30-year-old Claire Squires from North Kilworth collapsed in Birdcage Walk near St Jame's Park on the final stretch of the course. She was running for the Samaritans because her mother has volunteered with the charity.

The money continues to flood in at a rate of hundreds of pounds a minute. Donations on her page on the JustGiving website reached the £200,000 mark last night as news of her death spread, increasing the total from just £500 on Sunday.

Catherine Johnstone, chief executive of the Samaritans, said the charity had been "overwhelmed" by the response following Ms Squires' death.

"These donations will be put into a tribute fund and, following discussions with the family, will go towards projects they feel would have been important to Claire."

– Catherine Johnstone, Samaritans

Many other tributes to Ms Squires, from North Kilworth, Leicestershire, have also flooded in.

Friend Nicola Short described her as an "inspiration" who brought laughter and love to everyone's life.

The pair climbed Mount Kilimanjaro for the RAF Association last year, raising £1,500 for the charity.

Paying tribute on the association's website, Ms Short said: "Claire is an inspiration to us all. She brought laughter and love to everyone's life. She will be sorely missed by all.

More on this story

  • Claire Squires funeral

    The funeral of a woman from Leicestershire who died during the London Marathon will be held in the family’s home town at midday.