A FIRST-TIME London Marathon runner is finally getting her running shoes on at the fifth time of trying in a bid to contest the race before she turns 40.

Lauren Franklin, of Long Meadows, Dovercourt, set herself the goal to take part in the 26.2 mile race in April before her milestone birthday next January.

However after failing to be drawn from the ballot for a fifth time this year she decided to take part on behalf of charity VICTA.

Lauren, 39, said: “I won’t do the full 26 miles before the race but I am confident of finishing – I will crawl across the line if I have to.”