Runners' efforts to benefit animals
Four-legged friends will benefit from the efforts of hundreds of pairs of human legs at the Bath Half Marathon next year.
Bath Cats and Dogs Home is one of the official good causes of the race on March 3, which is likely to involve 15,000 runners.
The Claverton Down animal shelter is the race's Local Charity of the Year and is hoping to raise both money and awareness through the event.
The centre provides shelter, veterinary care and re-homing services to more than 2,500 animals every year.
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Although it is a branch of the national RSPCA charity, the 75-year-old home does not receive financial support from its parent body to meet its £1.3 million annual running costs.
Events and community fundraiser Zena Jones said: "We are already heavily involved in the local community and are always looking at ways of broadening our appeal and gaining even more exposure across a wider community. Becoming charity of the year is therefore vital to us and the perfect sporting backdrop to help raise our profile and that of animal welfare generally."
Its runners in this year's Bath Half raised a total of £9,000, which has helped with the £408-a-day cost of its on-site veterinary suite.
Ms Jones said: "Ultimately, we hope to recruit more runners than in previous years, raise even more money and continue providing the love, care and veterinary treatment to even more unwanted, neglected and mistreated animals."
This year's race raised about £1.5 million for charity, making it one of the biggest fundraising events in the South West.
The other featured charities confirmed for next year's race are breast cancer charity CoppaFeel!, the Royal United Hospital's Forever Friends Appeal, and communication charity I CAN, which is the Bath Half Fun Run cause.
Mel Taylor, charity director at race organiser Running High, said: "The Bath Half provides a strong platform for our featured charities to extend the good work they do at both a local and national level and it is fantastic to have such a diverse range of charities on board for the 2013 event. We are very much looking forward to working with all of them in the lead-up to the race to encourage entrants to run for their causes and raise as much money as possible."
To find out more about running for the charities, visit www.bathhalf.co.uk.
More information about the cats and dogs home is at www.bcdh.org.uk.