THOUSANDS of runners including one from who lives on the outskirts of Harwich helped raise tens of thousands of pounds for a mental health charity.

Colchester Zoo's 10K Stampede took place at the landmark attraction on April 28 and saw a large group of runners pound the pavements in aid of the Mid and North East Essex Mind. 

One of the competitors who crossed the finished line was Holly Porter, from Little Oakley, who is a dedicated midwife at Colchester Hospital.

Ms Porter said: "My job is very intense and a lot of my colleagues and I hope they would use the services Mid and North East Essex Mind provides.

"I also care for women who have post-natal depression and the charity has the facility and tools to help them."

In total the event raised more than £22,000 for the charity, which offers a variety of mental health services, including one-on-one counselling and support for addiction recovery, amongst which they operate a crisis café for urgent issues.

Ginny Idehen, CEO of Mind, said: "We were overwhelmed by the response from fundraisers to this year's Stampede.

"Everyone in the community came out to support this fun event."

The event also supported Colchester Zoo’s global conservation charity Action for the Wild.

Next year's charity partner for the stampede will again be Mid and North East Essex Mind.

Potential entrants can enquire about running places by contacting or calling 01206 764600.