Businessman celebrates birthday with 86 mile run

Written by Pete Davison.

Rather than using his breath to blow out the candles on his cake, businessman Phil Griffiths will give his lungs – and legs – a workout by running the entire length of the ancient Ridgeway to celebrate his 63rd birthday.

And along the way, Phil, a director of outplacement specialists Connect and a member of Marlborough Running Club, aims to raise money for research into prostate cancer.

The keen off-road runner will set off from Ivinghoe in Buckinghamshire on Saturday, July 9, arriving at Overton Hill, near Marlborough, some 86 miles and 20 hours later.

He will start at around 10pm so that the trickiest part of the track – the Liddington to Ogbourne section which has been heavily rutted by off-road drivers – can be tackled during daylight hours.

Phil has been a member of Marlborough Running Club for 15 years. He took part in the second London Marathon in 1982, but prefers off-road courses and has run the 194-mile-long Thames Path – which he completed over five days – and the 190-mile Wainwright´s Coast-to-Coast, which crosses the Yorkshire Dales and Moors.

He said of his run – the equivalent of more than three marathons – “It´s completely mad, of course, but as bits fall off me along the way I´ll know it´s in a good cause."

“I´m running for prostate cancer because it kills one man in the UK every hour, but just doesn´t get talked about enough – there´s a real stigma attached to it." 

“The Prostate Cancer Charity needs money to fund research and provide information and support to people affected by prostate cancer.” 

Anyone who wishes to sponsor Phil can do so at For more information about Connect, log on to