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Claire has Lofty ambitions

27 February 2020

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Bolton Wanderers mascot Lofty the Lion stars in a new video, helping Bolton College’s Claire Massey prepare for the London Marathon.


Lofty put Claire, a Communication Support Worker, through her paces at Wanderers home ground, the University of Bolton Stadium. 


Claire’s gruelling training session was filmed by the College and turned into a video-montage, inspired by the classic movie ‘Rocky’ which you can watch here.


The mum of three is running the marathon to raise funds for the British Liver Trust, who support people affected by liver disease in the UK.


The charity has a special place in Claire’s heart; at the age of just 16, she was struck down by an autoimmune liver condition, leaving her bedridden for months. Despite responding well to medication, Claire has since endured three relapses of the chronic illness.


Bolton College, which is part of the University of Bolton Group, approached Lofty the Lion after Claire decided to run the London Marathon for the very first time. Lofty was up for the challenge, and used his sporting expertise to prepare Claire.


Claire, who has worked at Bolton College for five years, said: “It was so good of Lofty to take time out of his busy schedule and help me prepare for the marathon – he gave me some top tips, and I’m feeling confident about the 26 miles now.


“I’ve already raised £1760, after organising a charity dinner at the Village Hotel in Bury, but I would love to hit my target of £2,500. It feels only right that after overcoming such hard times with my health, and responding so well to treatment, that I do my bit to help others and

fundraise on behalf of the British Liver Trust.


“Any donations, however small, would be much appreciated.”


Lofty the Lion, named after Wanderers legend Nat Lofthouse, added: “I ain’t lion when I say that Claire is truly roarsome. Fangs to my expert training tips, I have a feline that Claire will smash her target – she is the mane (wo)man and is the pride of Bolton College.”


To watch the full video, click here and to donate, click here