Burnley girl cheered home after completing 30 two-mile runs in June

A surprise ‘street welcome’ celebrated 12-year-old Jess Anderson completing her two-miles-a-day running challenge through June in memory of her nana Kath Gaskell.

Jess Anderson, centre, celebrates with, from left to right, dad Paul, brother Jacob, grandad John Gaskell, and mum Lou
Jess Anderson, centre, celebrates with, from left to right, dad Paul, brother Jacob, grandad John Gaskell, and mum Lou

There were loud cheers from neighbours and friends in Applecross Drive, Burnley, when she crossed the finishing line on Tuesday evening.

Jess raised around £3,000 for Pendleside Hospice running through some of the hottest – and wettest days – of the summer.

Former Manchester City academy soccer player Jess, who now stars for Blackburn Rovers academy, had received special video messages from her Clarets favourite Jack Cork and Manchester City and England women’s captain Steph Houghton, as well as a message of support from Pendleside trustees chairman David Brown.

Jess Anderson crosses the finishing line for the 30th time during June

Jess, a pupils at St Christopher’s C of E High School Academy, Accrington, said: “I was really sad when I lost my nana in April. She had received a lot of care from Pendleside so I decided to raise some money for them in her memory.

“My mum ran with me a lot of days but my fastest time of 15 minutes was when I was joined by a neighbour Luke Atkinson.”

Fittingly, Jess began her last run from her nana’s house in Leamington Avenue and was joined by her mum Lou and brother Jacob.

And first to cheer her over the finishing line was her dad Paul, managing director of Burnley mobility specialists Jay-Care, who said: “I can’t tell you how proud we are of Jess. It was all her own idea. She was very close to her nana and just felt she had to do something in her memory.

“We would like to thank everyone who has made donations and to everyone who turned out to cheer Jess home on her final run.”

Jess was thanked for ‘an unbelievable and emotional effort’ by Lisa Pearson, head of income generation at Pendleside.