A WOMAN will do the Great North Run to raise money for the charity Parkinson’s UK– to help fund research into the cruel condition which robbed her of her father.

Tracey Henderson, from Tudhoe, will run the UK’s most iconic half marathon in September in memory of her late dad Eric Henderson.

Mr Henderson, who grew up in Wheatley Hill then moved to Durham with his family in the 1980s, worked for Durham University for more than 30 years before his retirement. He passed away in June with Parkinson’s, a progressive neurological condition which affects around 148,000 people in the UK and for which there is currently no cure.

Ms Henderson, a civil servant, said: “I’m running in tribute to my dad to raise money for Parkinson’s UK who are doing brilliant work to find a cure for this cruel condition. Parkinson’s robbed me of the dad I’d known and loved for all of these years. It was heart-breaking to see what he went through.

“This will be my third Great North Run but unlike the last two years, I’m not focused on getting a personal best. I just want to go out and enjoy the day, in the hope that I make Dad proud and that the charity can find better treatments to help people just like him.”

The 52-year-old hopes to raise around £300 for Parkinson’s UK, which estimates that there are more than 40 symptoms of the condition including physical symptoms like tremor and muscle stiffness to depression, anxiety, hallucinations, memory problems and dementia. The charity aims to find a cure and improve life for everyone affected by Parkinson's through pioneering research, information, support and campaigning.

Katy Payne, head of events at Parkinson’s UK, said: “We’re delighted and grateful that Tracey has chosen to support Parkinson’s UK by taking on the incredible challenge of running the largest half marathon in the world.

“Our work supporting people with Parkinson’s, and research to find better treatments and a cure for the condition is completely dependent on donations. To put it simply, without the support of our amazing fundraisers, the work we do just wouldn’t be possible. We wish Tracey the very best of luck for the Great North Run.”

Ms Henderson can be sponsored online at

justgiving.com/fundraising/tracey-henderson19