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Actor kicks off charity challenges with Newport Marathon

Welsh actor Mark Lewis Jones is set to take on a series of fitness challenges to raise funds for three charities – and to train to take part in the Ironman Wales challenge in September.

Mark Lewis Jones, who has filmed Star Wars and Keeping Faith over the last year, has also been busy in his role as Pay for a Day Ambassador for the Marie Curie Hospice, Cardiff and the Vale in Penarth.

Now Mark is also set to join forces with two further charities in his latest fitness challenge – blood cancer research charity Bloodwise and Believe, the charity aiming to promote and support Organ Donation across Wales and beyond and support those involved in Organ Donation.

In 2016, Mark was due to take on a gruelling 47-mile run across the Brecon Beacons to raise funds to support the Marie Curie Hospice, Cardiff & the Vale, in his role as Pay for a Day Ambassador for the Penarth hospice. Mark raised £1456.40 in the weeks leading up to the scheduled event.

“Sadly, I had to pull out during the week running up to the event due to an Achilles problem and a chest infection, as I was advised strongly not to do it,” said Mark.

“A number of people had very kindly contributed into a just giving account to support me. That money is still in the account to be donated to Marie Curie.”

Despite the setback, Mark did not want to give up and following a busy year of acting jobs in 2017, has now decided to tackle on the Ironman Wales in Tenby in September.

In the meantime, he will be taking part in numerous other fitness challenges as part of his training – starting with the Newport Marathon on April 29

Mark said: “I have visited the hospice on many occasions and I’ve had the privilege of being introduced to the hospice staff and some of the patients. I have always found the atmosphere at the hospice to be inspiring – it is an extraordinary place.

“The care and support that is given is remarkable; nothing is too much trouble for the nurses. Paying for 24 hours of care at the hospice is a way of providing patients and families with remarkable care and support. It is something I am proud to be a part of and I am looking forward to the challenge that lies ahead.”

“I am also now raising money for a further two charities – Bloodwise, which has always been a cause close to my heart.

“And also Believe, the Organ Donation charity set up by Anna Bates. I’ve met Anna on several occasions now, and it’s a privilege to be able to work with her to highlight the charity’s aims.

“The £1456.40 that is in the Just Giving account will still go directly to Marie Curie. Anything that is raised from now on will be split 3 ways.“

If you can support Mark’s challenges, please visit https://www.justgiving.com/teams/MarkLewisJonesIronman and select the charity page you would like to donate to.