A WOMAN has completed a two-and-a-half-year-long challenge to run a half marathon in every city in England.

Former Skipton Girls High School pupil, Alice Fortune ran 55 half marathons in 55 different cities to raise money for the mental health charity Young Minds.

Alice, 24, who lives in Ilkley, and is a first year doctor at Liverpool Royal University Hospital, completed her final run on The Mall in London earlier this month.

Alice said: "I was inspired to do this challenge as I picked up running at 20 years old, and since then have come to love it. It has hugely helped my own mental health and confidence, and I wanted to do this challenge to help other young people's mental health too."

In completing the challenge Alice clocked up 737 miles, over 120 hours, completing 1.2million steps and over 300 hours of travelling on trains - and one bus to Wells which has no train station.

To complete the challenge she ran a full marathon in London, with over 20 people joining her for parts of the run, with more family and friends meeting her at the finish.

Alice is now only a few hundred pounds short of her fund raising target of £10,000 for Young Minds.

She said it was a "brilliant charity" which fights for young people struggling with their mental health in the UK.

The money raised will go to funding a telephone advice line for parents, providing online advice to young people, and campaigning for improved funding for young people's mental health services nationally.

"With suicide remaining the biggest killer of 5-35 years olds, and referrals to mental health services at an all time high, this is a hugely important cause to fundraise for," added Alice.

"For years, running has done amazing things for my mental health. I wanted to take this a step further by running to support other people's mental health too. I am a medical student, joining an NHS which is not able to provide support quickly and effectively enough for young people struggling with their mental health when they need it.

"I hope my challenge will raise both money and awareness for the overwhelming number of young people struggling with mental illness, particularly following the COVID-19 lock downs, and the need to improve funding and infrastructure in the health system that supports them."

There is still time to donate at justgiving.com/fundraising/running55cities