A DUDLEY man will take on the London Marathon for a second time this weekend, inspired by his girlfriend's battle against cancer.

Darren Whitley is currently supporting his partner Jess through her treatment for breast cancer.

The 30-year-old was diagnosed just a week after Darren ran the marathon last year for the first time.

Now, he has been inspired to take on the challenge to raise funds for The Institute of Cancer Research in recognition of Jess' ordeal.

Darren explained: “This year the London Marathon means so much more to me. Seeing first-hand the effects of cancer and cancer treatment, I am more determined than ever to finish the race and raise as much money as I can for the ICR.

“Jess was so fit and active until her cancer treatment. I have seen her get weaker, lose her hair, and I have seen the emotional impact that her diagnosis has had. It is 2019, and still some of the treatments people receive are worse in the short term than the cancer itself on their physical and mental health.

“We still have a long way to go, and Jess has still got to have radiotherapy and reconstructive surgery. Raising awareness of cancer, especially in younger people, and raising money for the ICR is so important.”

Darren has so far raised £1,000 and hopes to boost that total before the marathon on Sunday April 29. Donations can be made at: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/DarrenWhitley

The ICR is a research institute and charity, which has been carrying out research into the causes of cancer, and how it might be treated or prevented, for more than 100 years.

Researchers at the ICR discovered the BRCA2 breast cancer gene, enabling families with a history of breast cancer to be assessed for future risk.

Professor Paul Workman, Chief Executive of The Institute of Cancer Research, London, said: “We couldn’t be more proud of all the runners taking on the London Marathon for the ICR – it’s a huge physical effort but their fundraising makes a tremendous difference to our cancer research. With their support, we are inspired to work even harder to make discoveries that will improve and save lives.

“As a research institute and a charity, the ICR relies on the generosity of people like Darren and the other runners in #TeamICR to raise the funds needed to make the discoveries that defeat cancer.”