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Cardiff woman describes 'awful' London Marathon experience

Credit: Kerrie Aldrige

A runner from Cardiff, who took over nine hours to complete the London Marathon, has spoken about her experience of running as stewards packed up signs and water stations.

39-year-old Kerrie Aldridge from Splott, was running for the Miscarriage Association. After having five miscarriages, the charity is close to her heart. Kerrie's efforts to complete the marathon has seen her raise an incredible £9,000 for charity.

Kerrie is now a proud London Marathon medal holder. Credit: Kerrie Aldrige

Despite her achievement, Kerrie said her experience during the race was ''awful'' as she was made to feel a burden and didn't experience the joy or comradeship that so many others describe.

"We saw the black cars coming in saying the course is closing and to move to the side of the pavement.'' Kerrie said.

''We saw the lorries come in with crews to take down scaffolding and barriers.

"They were putting chemicals down to clean the blue line indicated the shortest route and they removed the mile markers. I wanted to take a selfie at each mile marker to send as a thank you to those mothers who had supported me but I wasn't able to do that.''

Kerrie running along Tower bridge Credit: Kerrie Aldrige

Kerrie said she had been told by previous runners that the most defining moment would be when she reached Tower Bridge where crowds of people would be cheering runners, but instead was a let down.

"I turned the corner and there was nothing but cleaning up trucks and no people.'' Kerrie said.

''It was an emotional moment but all the official photographers had left so I have no photographs to look back on."

Things became more difficult as Kerrie reached the half way mark at 13 miles and after water stations had been removed she had to resort to asking people to pass her half full bottles of water which had been discarded on the floor.

She also passed runners on the opposite side of the road running in the other direction who had reached the 22 mile mark.

"I understand they have to keep London moving and stewards had been doing their job for a long time but it was so lonely.'' Kerrie said.

The Virgin Money London Marathon has been approached for comment.

Despite her experience, there were some positive moments for Kerrie.

One of the pivotal moments for me was at mile 17 when a woman saw me wearing my Miscarriage Association t-shirt. She came up to hug me, burst into tears and said 'please carry on and run for my angels'. That's what kept me going.

– Kerrie Aldrige

In the end, Kerrie finished the race in nine hours and 11 minutes and received her London Marathon medal.

Kerrie took over nine hours to complete the race Credit: Kerrie Aldrige

"It meant the absolute world to me because I wanted to do it for my angel babies and I wanted to do it for other women who had experienced miscarriages"

"I wanted to show my little boy that if you reach for the stars anything is possible".