A FITNESS enthusiast is organising a Witchfinder General themed run for charity.

Simon Tavner is encouraging residents to sign up and take part in a 5k Witchfinder trail that passes through Manningtree and Mistley.

The 42-year-old has planned the route to go through a range of historical sites linked to Matthew Hopkins, Mistley’s infamous witch hunter.

He lived in the village in the mid-1600s and accused hundreds of women and a few men of being witches – these victims were then imprisoned, tortured and killed.

Mr Tavner, from Lawford, said: “As a keen runner I thought it would be a good idea to make the route as there is a lot of history in the area about Matthew Hopkins.

“It is the first event I have organised and I am hoping about 100 people will take part in walking or running the route.” The event will be open to both runners and walkers and the route will pass through the ducking pond and Matthew Hopkins’ courtroom, as well as the Mistley Towers and the 800-year-old tree Old Knobbley in Furze Hill. Money raised from the trail will go to Acorn Village, a residential community for adults with learning disabilities in Mistley.

The charity run is taking place on Sunday, May 20 at 10am at Acorn Village, in Clacton Road.

There will be a race briefing at 9.40am in the front field and participants should aim to arrive between 8.45am and 9.30am.

All finishers will receive a medal and there will be refreshments available at Acorn Village at the end of the race.

For more information, visit www.witchfindertrail.uk.