Running man Scott Cunliffe has completed his challenge to run to every one of Burnley’s Premier League away games during the 2018/19 season.
Scott completed his mammoth fund-raising challenge when he was given a rapturous reception at Everton’s Goodison Park at half time of the Clarets’ final away game of the season.
His achievement was also marked by manager Sean Dyche and the players welcoming the runner into the dressing room to congratulate him.
That was the triumphant culmination of a RunAway Challenge that began back in August, 2018, by running the 269 miles to St. Mary’s Stadium to watch the Clarets take on Southampton FC for the season opener.
Since then, Scott has clocked up over 3,000 miles following Burnley on foot - and to-date raised almost £24k (with Gift Aid) for charity.
Burnley FC’s official charity, Burnley FC in the Community will be given 50% of all funds raise, to distribute to local projects focussed on young people and mental health in Scott’s hometown.
The other half will be split evenly among the foundations of all Premier League clubs.
Tracing back to the summer of 2018, Scott’s plan was to set a challenge that combined his love of away days, his passion for running and for his hometown of Burnley.
At the time Scott said: “I’m doing this because I know, from personal experience, how running is a powerful tool to achieve positive mental and physical wellbeing.
“I spent two decades working for charities in parts of Southeast Asia that were seriously affected by violent crime and poverty.
“My experiences left me with post-traumatic stress disorder and depression – running was a major part of my therapy in overcoming this. I want to use that experience to benefit others and I think football is the perfect way to unite people in this cause.”
Speaking at Goodison on Friday= night, Scott said: He said: “It’s been quite an emotional time.
“I’m just relieved that I never got injured, and that I haven’t lost my love of running, or of following Burnley away.
“But also, there’s an excitement now of what comes next in terms of the fund-raising and seeing that come to fruition and some of the projects coming to life.
“That’s something to really look forward to, but above all that is a sense of pride, for sure.”
Neil Hart, Chief Executive Officer for Burnley FC in the Community said: “It’s difficult to comprehend the magnitude of what Scott has achieved with this challenge. When you look at the numbers – 3000 miles, 117 marathons – they are almost impossible to fathom.
“Scott exemplifies much of what we stand for at Burnley FC – hard work, determination and spirit. He has made the entire club proud with his achievements.
“I would urge football fans across the country to give this man your money!
“What he has accomplished is astonishing and clubs up and down the country will benefit from his fundraising efforts through their official charities.
“He deserves the support of the entire football family.”
To make a donation to Scott and his RunAway Challenge here: https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/therunawaychallenge
Follow Scott Cunliffe on Twitter at @sekott.
RunAway in numbers:
Total runs: 19
Total miles: 3090
Total steps: 5.6 million
Total hours running: 735 across 100 days of running
Equivalent marathons: 118
Pairs of running shoes: 15