In the news - Gary Marlow

26th February 2010 at 00:00

Who's this then?

Gary Marlow is an ex-PE teacher who turns 30 this year. He qualified at Brighton University and taught for two years at Sackville School in West Sussex before setting up his own business, Global Tennis, which works with schools to provide sporting opportunities for children. This year he launched a campaign called Do 30, aiming to complete 30 challenges for 30 charities. He hopes to raise #163;300,000.

What inspired Do 30?

"I have always been involved in various charity events and I wanted to make a difference this year," Mr Marlow says. "I applied for the London Marathon, running for the NSPCC, and decided it wasn't going to stop there, so I came up with 30 challenges."

What sort of challenges?

"I've climbed the 'Gherkin' in London. I reached 1,037 steps in seven minutes and 49 seconds. My first challenge was on New Year's Day when I swam in the sea at Brighton for five minutes. I'm doing the half marathon in Portsmouth, the Three Peaks Challenge, boxing with the ex-world champion Gavin Rees on top of Snowdonia and I'm trying to attempt a Guinness World Record by bungee jumping from a hot air balloon above 15,000 feet."

So which event will be most taxing?

"We have 22 events and 22 charities already, with a further eight to organise; one challenge is to play a tennis match at the North Pole. It will be the most northerly sporting event, and a possibility for another Guinness World Record."

How does all this sit with the day job?

"Well, the thing is fitting it in. All my challenges are either at the weekend or during the school holidays. It's good to run my own business - I can find the time to organise late in the evenings and start work later in the day."

Are the schools behind you?

"I am working to get them involved - such as on the 30th day of each month pupils can do 30 minutes more of PE, or create a 30-word poem. The whole concept is to try and get schools on board right across the curriculum."

After all that, a break will be in order.

"Yes, my wife wants to know what I'm doing next. My last challenge will be on December 31 this year. In 2011 I won't be doing something like this but I'm sure I'll come up with some hare-brained scheme to raise money."


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