Royston’s ‘Mr Ovary’ trains for 20th marathon to hit mammoth fundraising target

Craig McMurrough, also known as Mr Ovary, is set to take on more challenges to hit his £100,000 targ

Craig McMurrough, also known as Mr Ovary, is set to take on more challenges to hit his £100,000 target for Ovacome. Picture: Courtesy of Craig McMurrough - Credit: Archant

Royston’s very own Mr Ovary is training for his 20th marathon, with hopes of smashing his £100,000 fundraising target for ovarian cancer charity Ovacome.

Craig McMurrough will be in the Royston town centre donning his 6ft ovary costume and rattling his fundraiser bucket to help edge him nearer to his target on September 13.

He will spend most of that day – from 10am to 4pm – outside the town’s Marks & Spencer store hoping to take him a step closer to raising his target.

So far Craig, a business consultant, has raised £36,756 in memory of his late sister Cheryl Earnshaw, who died of the disease four years ago aged just 43, leaving behind a husband and two children.

Craig had been planning to compete in the Great North Run on September 13, where he hoped to raise the final £300 of the £1,500 target he set himself for that race.

The event was to be part of a gruelling year of fundraising that Craig had planned to mark turning 50 this year. But because of COVID-19, plans have been postponed to 2021 to run the London and the Tokyo Marathon, undergo an aeroplane wing walk, canoe the Zambezi and trek the Sahara.

However, on Sunday, October 4, he will be running a virtual version of the London Marathon. He has mapped out a 28-mile route from Royston to Cambridge – where he will spend time fundraising, before crossing over the M11 roundabout and returning along the A10.

Most Read

“It all sounds quite dangerous,” he admitted, “but the pathway is a few metres away from the road and I’ve done the route on my bike, plus you will be able spot me with the 6ft ovary costume and teal balloons tied to it.

“Running for a charity gives me a buzz. I go at a nice sedentary pace so that people can have a chat and put some money in the bucket, but I still need to keep fit for this.”

Craig says Cheryl’s dying months after being diagnosed were very sudden. Like many women, she had dismissed bloating – one of the main symptoms of the disease – as being nothing serious.

Ovacome has come up with the BEAT acronym, highlighting the main signs of what to look out for with the disease and to get checked out by a GP if they are new and last for more than two weeks.

B is for bloating that is persistent and does not come and go. E is for eating difficulties and feeling fuller. A is for abdominal or pelvic pain you feel most days and T is for toilet changes, bowel or bladder.