A FATHER of two from Abingdon is taking on a 50-mile race this weekend to raise cash for Blue Skye Thinking.

Serge Convers-Reignier, who lives in Bowgrave Copse, said running for the charity set up in memory of Skye Hall was “close to his heart”.

Skye, of Abingdon, died in August 2014 as a result of the treatment he received while battling a brain tumour for a year.

Since then, the five-year-old’s parents Sally, 37 and Andrew, 43, have campaigned tirelessly to raise money for research into new treatments to tackle childhood cancers.

Mr Convers-Reignier, 42, will take part in the Thames Trot Ultra 50 on Saturday, which will see him run along the Thames from Oxford to Henley along with hundreds of others.

He added: “As a dad of two boys who are similar ages to Skye, the work the charity undertakes is close to my heart.

“I decided to do the run not only because I like fundraising, but because I saw a video of Skye and I thought it would be a really worthwhile thing to do.

“It really hit me. Children with the same condition as Skye’s should still be playing, laughing, running around, doing what other kids are doing but they aren’t.

“For this to happen, we need to invest into research so that all children diagnosed with brain tumours will have a better chance of survival and a better quality of life after treatment.”

The chemist hopes to raise £1,000 for the charity and has been training since November.

He added: “I have run a couple of marathons before so I’m quite a keen runner, but I have never done this event, so it will be a challenge.”

To date Blue Skye Thinking has raised more than £250,000 for research into treatments to help children suffering from brain tumours.

Mrs Hall said: “We first met Serge and his wife when they came around to our house to collect vast quantities of donated loom bands to untangle to prepare for the Guinness World Record we set in July last year.

“We are so grateful that the momentum is still there to fund more research and that people like Serge are challenging themselves with such great sporting events.

“The charity has raised enough money to be able to fund a full-time researcher based at the Sir James Spence Institute at Newcastle University where the entire research unit is dedicated to paediatric brain tumours.

“This is a great step forward but there is so much more to be done if we are going to start making a significant impact on survival rates of these children.”

More than 350 children a year in the UK alone face the devastating news that they have a brain tumour but less than one per cent of cancer funding goes towards research into brain tumours, the number one cancer killer in children and teenagers. The cure rates have not improved in 40 years.

* To sponsor Mr Convers-Reignier visit justgiving.com/Serge-Convers-Reignier.