Lancaster University students take on marathon squash challenge in aid of Alzheimer’s Society

Ben Jolly and Charlie Collett are undertaking a squash marathon in aid of Alzheimer's Society.
Ben Jolly and Charlie Collett are undertaking a squash marathon in aid of Alzheimer's Society.

Two Lancaster University students are taking on a marathon challenge this week to raise money for the Alzheimer’s Society.

The university squash club’s president and first team club captain, Ben Jolly and Charlie Collett, will set out on their best of 99 challenge tomorrow, Friday October 4.

The match will begin at 7.30am at Lancaster University’s Sport Centre, and supporters are welcome to go along to watch, and the match will also be live streamed online on YouTube and/or on Facebook.

Ben said: “Charlie and I are attempting to take the tempo up even further by playing under official match rules in a best of 99 game match.

“This means we can only take a maximum of two minutes break after each game. We are however allowed an additional five minutes every hour for toilet breaks, changing clothes etc.

“This can also be stacked so we could take a 15 minute break every three hours for example. Therefore, we anticipate the match will take approximately 15 hours (starting around 7am and finishing around 10pm).

“But of course it may take considerably longer or less time – we have never played anywhere near this long before!

“I’ve been searching online for similar challenges and believe this could be the fourth longest continuous match ever attempted.

“Charlie and I chose the Alzheimer’s Society to benefit from our fundraiser for a number of reasons. There has been a lot in the press recently about dementia and how many people are touched by this dreadful disease, both old and young.

“Whilst it may not be a particularly glamorous cause we feel it an extremely worthy one. On a personal level my grandfather, who I am particularly close to, was diagnosed with dementia a couple of years ago, and I am witnessing first

hand how it is affecting him and the rest of the family.

“It is a scary, lonely, isolating disease for the person suffering from it but also very distressing for those standing by watching the person you love and care about change beyond recognition.

“There is a lot more to dementia than simply forgetting what day of the week it is or where you’ve put your glasses.

“My grandfather is now constantly agitated, anxious, and upset. He rarely sleeps at night when his confusion is at its worst. He has hallucinations, thinking strangers are in the house, doesn’t always recognise my grandmother.

“I don’t think any of us appreciate the realities of a particular condition until we have first hand experience of it.”

To donate to the fundraising, go online here

The pair have so far raised more than £800 of their £1,000 target.

There are more than 850,000 people living with dementia in the UK alone. The Alzheimer’s Society commits itself to maintaining, improving and promoting its unique knowledge and understanding of dementia.

It seeks to define and develop quality in its activities and services, to be inclusive of all communities but in particular people with dementia, their families and the professionals who work with them and to work in partnership with other organisations which share its aims.