A NORTH-EAST hospital consultant and campaigner is to run 66 kilometres to show his support for The People’s March for the NHS which is making its way to London from Jarrow.

Organised by two Darlington working mothers, Joanna Adams and Rehana Azam as part of their 999 Call For NHS campaign the 300 mile march is to protest against the increasing privatisation of the NHS.

Due to reach Westminster on Saturday September 6 the marchers will now be joined for the last 66 kilometres by keen runner Dr Clive Peedell, a consultant oncologist at the James Cook University Hospital in Middlesbrough and the co-leader of the National Health Action Party.

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Dr Peedell, who is also co-chair of the NHS Consultants Association said: “I fully support the marchers and will be proud to join them on the last day. I will be running the last 66km to signify the 66 years since the NHS was founded. I'll also be speaking at the rally in Westminster at the end of the march.”

He said the marchers are right to highlight the increasing privatisation of the NHS and the march is “a brilliant way to raise public awareness.”

Dr Peedell said privatising the NHS was “an abuse of the democratic process” and the reason why he helped set up the National Health Action Party.

“I advise all those who care about the NHS to join the march or donate via their website 999callfornhs.org.uk,” he added.

Among the celebrities and politicians showing their support on the campaign website are: Johnny Vegas, Barbara Windsor, Ricky Tomlinson, film-maker Ken Loach, Diane Abbott MP and Labour’s Shadow Health Secretary Andy Burnham MP, who is due to meet the marchers as they near their destination.

Hundreds of thousands of people have so far visited the marchers’ website.