A HARWICH park run which rallies against cancer will celebrate its fifth anniversary with a 5k run this Saturday.

Harwich 5K Your Way (5KYW), like all 5KYW events, takes place on the last Saturday of every month, with a welcoming atmosphere for all dealing with cancer in one way, shape, form, or another.

The emphasis is not on running your best race – with exercise, fresh air, and meeting new people being seen as a crucial way to stay healthy for all, including those with cancer diagnoses.

People can walk, jog, run, cheer or volunteer at any local 5k event, with people in Harwich often hanging out afterwards for a coffee and chat.

The 5KYW events are part of the MOVE charity, founded by international athlete Gemma Hillier-Moses in 2016 to give those affected with cancer the support she needed when she was diagnosed with cancer aged 24.

Harwich and Manningtree Standard: Friendly - Supporter Carol (left) and others enjoy the run at their own paceFriendly - Supporter Carol (left) and others enjoy the run at their own pace (Image: Harwich 5k Your Way)

Harwich has three ambassadors for the Move against Cancer, with Tendring’s only Macmillan nurse, Kelly being one of them.

She said: “I’m a Macmillan cancer care nurse covering the Clacton and Tendring area.

“We run cancer support groups in both Harwich at the Royal Oak pub, on Main Road, every Wednesday from 10am until 12pm, and in Clacton at Pier Avenue Baptist church, every Monday 10am until 12pm.”

Harwich and Manningtree Standard: Welcoming - (Left to Right) Kelly, Marion, and DebWelcoming - (Left to Right) Kelly, Marion, and Deb (Image: Harwich 5k Your Way)

Carol, a supporter of the run from the start, said: “I am very fortunate as I haven’t had cancer, but as both my husband and my son have had different types of cancer over the past 12 years, I felt that I could take part.

“Until then I had avoided Parkrun, so this was also a new experience. I was slightly worried that I might be expected to run (my running days are well behind me). However, I was assured that I could walk the distance.”

Carol also said that the run was nice for its views across the sea and that no one is bothered by the run taking nearly an hour to walk, and added: “So, I would say to anyone with cancer, or supporting family and friends, please come along.

“Don’t be put off by the fact it is connected to the Parkrun. Enjoy the walk or run, the pace is up to you, embrace the fresh air and maybe make some new friends.”

You can catch Harwich’s three ambassadors Deb, Kelly, and Elspeth on January, 27 and reach out or find more information on Facebook or on email or their website.